Quackenbush v. Allstate Ins. Co., 517 U.S. 706, 7 (1996)

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Opinion of the Court

that only remands based on grounds specified in 1447(c) are immune from review under 1447(d)." This gloss renders 1447(d) inapplicable here: The District Court's abstention-based remand order does not fall into either category of remand order described in 1447(c), as it is not based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction or defects in removal procedure.

Finding no affirmative bar to appellate review of the District Court's remand order, we must determine whether that review may be obtained by appeal under 1291. The general rule is that "a party is entitled to a single appeal, to be deferred until final judgment has been entered, in which claims of district court error at any stage of the litigation may be ventilated." Digital Equipment Corp. v. Desktop Direct, Inc., 511 U. S. 863, 868 (1994) (citations omitted). Accordingly, we have held that a decision is ordinarily considered final and appealable under 1291 only if it "ends the litigation on the merits and leaves nothing for the court to do but execute the judgment." Catlin v. United States, 324 U. S. 229, 233 (1945); see also Digital, supra, at 867 (quoting this standard). We have also recognized, however, a narrow class of collateral orders which do not meet this definition of finality, but which are nevertheless immediately appealable under 1291 because they " 'conclusively determine [a] disputed question' " that is " 'completely separate from the merits of the action,' " " 'effectively unreviewable on appeal from a final judgment,' " Richardson-Merrell Inc. v. Koller, 472 U. S. 424, 431 (1985) (quoting Coopers & Lybrand v. Livesay, 437 U. S. 463, 468 (1978)), and "too important to be denied review," Cohen v. Beneficial Industrial Loan Corp., 337 U. S. 541, 546 (1949).

The application of these principles to the appealability of

the remand order before us is controlled by our decision in Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital v. Mercury Constr. Corp., supra. The District Court in that case entered an order under Colorado River Water Conservation Dist. v. United States, 424 U. S. 800 (1976), staying a federal diversity suit

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