Eleventh Circuit Adopts “Last Served Defendant” Rule for Removal From State Court

In Bailey v. Janssen Pharmaceutica, Inc., Case No. 07-12258 (11th Cir. July 29, 2008), the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals answered a previously unsettled question regarding removals from state court.  The Eleventh Circuit adopted the "last served defendant" rule, meaning that each defendant has 30 days from the date of service to remove the case to federal court, even in the time to remove for other defendants has already run.

Interestingly, this case was decided by only two judges – Judge Anderson and a visiting judge from the Sixth Circuit.  Judge Hull originally was on the panel, but she recused herself after oral argument.  Therefore, the case was decided by a two judge quorum.