In Williams v. Homeland Insurance, a discretionary appeal accepted under the Class Action Fairness Act, the Court affirmed the denial of a motion to remand, concluding that the “local controversy” exception to CAFA jurisdiction had been satisfied. The opinion reminds that “[t]he parties moving for remand bear the burden of proof that they fall within an exception to CAFA jurisdiction.” Op. at 3. In this challenge to discounts made by a PPO program, the Court concluded that adding a claims administrator as a new party did not change the fact that “significant relief” was still sought from the in-state entity that operated the PPO network, thus satisfying that element of the local controversy exception. Op. at 6. The Court went on to state that “a class arbitration is not a class action,” and that as a result, a prior arbitration did not implicate the requirement of the exception that no other class action have been filed against a defendant in the previous three years. Op. at 7.
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