Searching over 5,500,000 cases.

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

James v. Caesars Entertainment Corporation

United States District Court, D. Arizona

September 24, 2019

Elizabeth Abigail James, Plaintiff,
Caesars Entertainment Corporation, Defendant.



         Pending before the Court is Defendant Caesars Entertainment Corporation’s (“Defendant”) Motion to Dismiss (Doc. 23) Plaintiff Elizabeth James’s (“Plaintiff”) Amended Complaint under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (“Rules”) 12(b)(1), (2), (3), and (5), and 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). Plaintiff has responded, (Doc. 24), and Defendant has replied, (Doc. 25). The Court now rules on the motion.

         I. BACKGROUND

         The following facts are either undisputed or recounted in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. See Wyler Summit P’ship v. Turner Broad. Sys., Inc., 135 F.3d 658, 661 (9th Cir. 1998). In March 2015, Defendant invited Plaintiff to Las Vegas to audition as a dealer for the World Series of Poker Tournament (“WSOP”) at the Rio hotel. (Doc. 21 at 2). Defendant offered Plaintiff the job after her audition, despite Plaintiff’s contention that white male applicants received particularly favorable scores. (Id.). Plaintiff also heard that she would not need to re-audition in the future so long as she dealt the WSOP every year. (Id.).

         During the 2015 WSOP, Plaintiff complained to a manager about a white male dealer’s offensive language in the breakroom. (Id. at 3). Afterwards, the dealer coordinator gave her a written warning. (Id.). Later, Plaintiff informed the tournament director that another employee verbally abused her, and that the breakroom smelled like marijuana. (Id. at 4). After she made these reports, several WSOP employees made damaging statements about Plaintiff’s dealing skills and attitude. (Id.). Defendant did not rehire Plaintiff when she applied to deal the Rio WSOP again in 2016, 2017, and 2018. (Id. at 2–3). The WSOP Circuit at Harrah’s Atlantic City hired her in 2016, however, as did the Goliath Poker Tournament in 2017, 2018, and 2019. (Id.). Plaintiff asserts that Defendant lacked any evidence or reasoning for not rehiring her. (Id. at 5). She further claims that Defendant caused her “substantial money damages” and “emotional distress” by conspiring not to rehire her. (Id. at 3–8).


         Defendant filed the pending Motion to Dismiss under Rules 12(b)(1), lack of subject-matter jurisdiction, (b)(2), lack of personal jurisdiction, (b)(3), improper venue, and (b)(5), insufficient service of process. Alternatively, Defendant moves to transfer the case to the United States District Court for the District of Nevada in the “interest of justice” under 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). The Court will address personal jurisdiction first. If the Court lacks jurisdiction, the Court need not proceed with further analysis.

         A. Personal Jurisdiction

         When an Arizona court of general jurisdiction has jurisdiction over a defendant, so does this Court. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(k). Arizona law provides for personal jurisdiction to the extent allowed by the Constitution of the United States. See Ariz. R. Civ. P. 4.2. The Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment limits a state’s power to grant personal jurisdiction over a defendant to a tribunal. Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations v. Brown, 564 U.S. 915, 923 (2011).

         Due process requires that a defendant “have certain minimum contacts with . . . [the forum] such that the maintenance of the suit does not offend ‘traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.’” Int’l Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 316 (1945) (quoting Milliken v. Meyer, 311 U.S. 457, 463 (1940)). This minimum-contacts framework gives rise to two forms of personal jurisdiction: general jurisdiction and specific jurisdiction. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Ct., 137 S.Ct. 1773, 1779–80 (2017). Under general jurisdiction, a court can hear any claim against a defendant who can be “fairly regarded as at home” in the state. Goodyear, 564 U.S. at 919. Under specific jurisdiction, a court can hear claims related to a defendant’s voluntary, in-state activities. Bristol-Myers Squibb, 137 S.Ct. at 1780.

         When a defendant moves to dismiss a case for lack of personal jurisdiction, the plaintiff bears the burden to establish personal jurisdiction. Dole Food Co. v. Watts, 303 F.3d 1104, 1108 (9th Cir. 2002). When a court resolves the issue of personal jurisdiction solely by reference to the parties’ moving papers and filed documents, the plaintiff satisfies this burden by making “only a prima facie showing of jurisdictional facts to withstand the motion to dismiss.” Pebble Beach Co. v. Caddy, 453 F.3d 1151, 1154 (9th Cir. 2006) (citation omitted). In such a case, uncontroverted statements in the plaintiff’s complaint are taken as true, and conflicts between facts contained in affidavits are resolved in the plaintiff’s favor. Schwarzenegger v. Fred Martin Motor Co., 374 F.3d 797, 800 (9th Cir. 2004).

         1. General Jurisdiction

         Generally, an individual is at home where domiciled, while a corporation is at home either where it is incorporated or where it has its principal place of business. Daimler AG v. Bauman, 571 U.S. 117, 137 (2014). Plaintiff alleges no facts establishing that Defendant is either incorporated or has its principal place of business in Arizona. She admits in her own complaint that Defendant is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Doc. 21 at 1). Defendant is neither incorporated in Arizona nor registered with the Arizona Corporation Commission, nor does it own real property in Arizona or have an agent for service here. (Doc. 23-1 at 2–3). Therefore, this Court cannot exercise general jurisdiction over Defendant.

         2. ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.