777 Fed.Appx. 866 (9th Cir. 2019), 18-15398, Castillo v. Western Range Association

Docket Nº:18-15398
Citation:777 Fed.Appx. 866
Party Name:Abel CANTARO CASTILLO, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. WESTERN RANGE ASSOCIATION, Defendant-Appellee.
Attorney:Joshua D. Buck, Leah Lin Jones, Mark Russell Thierman, Attorney, Thierman Buck, LLP, Reno, NV, Brian C. Corman, Attorney, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, Washington, DC, Alexander Hood, Attorney, Towards Justice, Denver, CO, Christine E. Webber, Partner, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, Wa...
Judge Panel:Before: THOMAS, Chief Judge, IKUTA, Circuit Judge, and MOLLOY, District Judge. IKUTA, Circuit Judge, dissenting
Case Date:June 19, 2019
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
 
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Page 866

777 Fed.Appx. 866 (9th Cir. 2019)

Abel CANTARO CASTILLO, Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

WESTERN RANGE ASSOCIATION, Defendant-Appellee.

No. 18-15398

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

June 19, 2019

Argued and Submitted May 13, 2019 San Francisco, California.

Editorial Note:

Governing the citation to unpublished opinions please refer to federal rules of appellate procedure rule 32.1. See also U.S.Ct. of App. 9th Cir. Rule 36-3.

Joshua D. Buck, Leah Lin Jones, Mark Russell Thierman, Attorney, Thierman Buck, LLP, Reno, NV, Brian C. Corman, Attorney, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, Washington, DC, Alexander Hood, Attorney, Towards Justice, Denver, CO, Christine E. Webber, Partner, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, Washington, DC, for Plaintiff-Appellant

Colton T. Loretz, Esquire, Attorney, Ellen Jean Winograd, Esquire, Woodburn and Wedge, Reno, NV, for Defendant-Appellee

Appeal from the United States District Court for the District of Nevada, Robert Clive Jones, District Judge, Presiding, D.C. No. 3:16-cv-00237-RCJ-VPC

Before: THOMAS, Chief Judge, IKUTA, Circuit Judge, and MOLLOY,[*] District Judge.

Page 867

MEMORANDUM[**]

Appellant Abel Cantáro Castillo, a nonimmigrant guestworker shepherd employed by Appellee Western Range Association (WRA) through the H-2A visa program, appeals the dismissal of his claims for lack of federal question jurisdiction, and for failure to satisfy the jurisdictional requirements of the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA). Because the parties are familiar with the facts and the procedural history, we need not recount those here. We have jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1291, and we reverse.1

"[W]e review de novo the district court’s ultimate legal conclusion that the underlying factual allegations are insufficient to establish CAFA jurisdiction[.]" Watkins v. Vital Pharms., Inc., 720 F.3d 1179, 1181 (9th Cir. 2013). "[W]e review for clear error any factual determinations necessary to establish jurisdiction." Id. The district court’s application of state law, here application of the appropriate statute of limitations, is reviewed de novo. In re Hawaii Fed. Asbestos Cases, 871 F.2d 891, 893 (9th Cir. 1989).

I

The district court erred in applying a two-year statute of limitations to Cantáro’s breach of contract claims. Nevada law provides that the applicable statute of limitations is six years on breach of contract actions "founded upon an instrument in writing." Nev. Rev. Stat. § 11.190(1)(b). We have previously noted the applicability of Nevada’s six-year statute of limitations to H-2A farmworkers’ claims for failure to pay wages owed under employment contracts. Rivera v. Peri & Sons Farms, Inc., 735 F.3d 892, 901 n.6 (9th Cir. 2013). The district court erred by instead applying the "gravamen of the action" test to determine that the two-year minimum wage claim statute of...

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