United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO
CONFIRM JURISDICTION OR TO PERMIT SUBSTITUTED
V. PARKER U.S. DISTRICT JUDGE
AFT Michigan, initiated this lawsuit on or about September
28, 2017 in the Third Circuit Court for the County of Wayne,
Michigan. (ECF No. 1 at Pg ID 1.) On October 6, 2017,
Defendants Project Veritas (“Defendant PV”) and
Marisa L. Jorge, a/k/a Marissa Jorge, a/k/a Marissa Perez
(“Defendant Jorge”) filed a Notice of Removal to
this Court. (Id.) Plaintiff filed an Amended
Complaint in state court on October 5, 2017 and a Second
Amended Complaint in this Court on October 17, 2017. (ECF No.
1 at Pg ID 2; ECF No. 6.) Plaintiff alleges Defendant Jorge
is a political actor for Defendant PV and gained access to
AFT Michigan by fraudulently misrepresenting herself as a
student at the University of Michigan. Plaintiff believes
Defendant Jorge unlawfully accessed and transmitted
proprietary and confidential information and engaged in
unlawful and unauthorized surveillance of Plaintiff's
employees. (ECF No. 6 at Pg ID 91.) Presently before the
Court is Plaintiff's Motion to Confirm Jurisdiction or to
Permit Substituted Service, filed on November 2, 2017. (ECF
No. 26.) Defendants filed a response on November 16, 2017,
and Plaintiff filed a reply on November 29, 2017. (ECF Nos.
32 & 38.) Plaintiff seeks a determination that Defendant
Jorge has either waived her objections to service, or, in the
alternative, for leave to serve Defendant Jorge by
substitution through her counsel. For the reasons stated
below, the Court grants Plaintiff's motion.
to Plaintiff, Defendant PV is an organization that uses its
employees to infiltrate organizations for the purpose of
securing proprietary information, which it distorts and
publishes in the media. (ECF No. 6 at Pg ID 95.) Plaintiff
believes Defendant Jorge is a political operative for
Defendant PV and gained access to AFT Michigan to advance
Defendant PV's political agenda. (Id. at Pg ID
initiated this lawsuit on September 28, 2017 in the Third
Circuit Court for the County of Wayne, Michigan. (ECF No. 1.)
On September 29, 2017, Third Circuit Court Judge Brian R.
Sullivan issued a Temporary Restraining Order enjoining
Defendants from publishing or disclosing confidential and/or
proprietary information relating to Plaintiff, its employees,
officers, or affiliates that was taken from Plaintiff without
consent. (ECF No. 23). Defendants filed a Notice of Removal
to this Court, and the case was assigned to Judge Paul D.
Borman. On October 20, 2017, this matter was reassigned to
the undersigned. (ECF No. 10.)
Law & Analysis
determining the validity of service in the state court prior
to removal, a federal court must apply the law of the state.
After removal, then federal law governs and defects in
service can be cured pursuant to § 1448.”
Hertel v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., No.
12-cv-174, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 143598, at *10 (W.D. Mich.
2012) (quoting 4A Wright & Miller, Federal Practice and
Procedure § 1082).
U.S.C. § 1448 provides:
In all cases removed from any State court to any district
court of the United States in which any one or more of the
defendants has not been served with process or in which the
service has not been perfected prior to removal, or in which
process served proves to be defective, such process or
service may be completed or new process issued in the same
manner as in cases originally filed in such district court.
accordance with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, service
of the summons and complaint may be accomplished pursuant to
Michigan law or by:
(A) delivering a copy of the summons and of the complaint to
the individual personally;
(B) leaving a copy of each at the individual's dwelling
or usual place of abode with someone of suitable age and
discretion who resides there; or
(C) delivering a copy of each to an agent authorized by
appointment or by law to receive service of process.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(e). In addition to the method described in
subsection (A), Michigan law allows for service on an
individual by “sending a summons and a copy of the
complaint by registered or certified mail, return receipt
requested, and delivery restricted to the addressee.”
MCR 2.105(A)(2). For a nonresident, substituted serviced may
be made by serving a copy of the summons and complaint in
Michigan on an agent, or an individual authorized to accept
service for the defendant, and ...