Civil procedure personal jurisdiction essay

First, although the rulemaking process is hardly simple, it is not the dismal political swamp that Congress is. If the FMLAA cannot advance, a bill offering a comprehensive statute directly affecting domestic defendants would be dead on arrival. Second, the bill is limited to certain kinds of products and claims on them.

Third, an extended Rule 4 k 2 would work to the benefit of both U. Most cases covered by the extended rule would look like J.

Personal Jurisdiction Essay Question

McIntyre or J. McIntyre with a U. If one takes the J. McIntyre facts but instead assumes the defendant is incorporated in Delaware with its principal place of business in New York rather than both in England , the defendant would be subject to jurisdiction in New York and Delaware. Pursuing a case against the defendant in New York or Delaware is a far more tenable proposition than trying to litigate in England. If one assumes the facts of J. McIntyre but with a U. It would be a considerable benefit to the U. If the U. While not comprehensive, an extended Rule 4 k 2 is a realistic possibility and a broad federal statute is not.

While an extended rule would not solve all the problems that jurisdictional law presents, it would solve the worst of them to the benefit of U. Tompkins , [] which has come to be understood to allow federal common law rules only if they will not promote forum shopping or result in inequitable administration of the laws. The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure contain two provisions that extend personal jurisdiction of federal courts beyond that of their state court counterparts.

One is the long-standing bulge rule that gives a mile bonus to federal courts in haling supplemental parties under Rules 14 and One might argue that the federal courts have special powers that allow for Rule 4 k 2 for federal question cases but not diversity cases. However, it is difficult to see why this should be so. Diversity jurisdiction has existed since the First Judiciary Act of , while general federal question jurisdiction did not become a permanent fixture until after the Civil War.

Unless some form of a national contacts test applies to the proposed extension of Rule 4 k 2 , it would all be for naught. The Mr. Nicastros of the world would still be left without a U. As noted above, it is difficult to see why the difference between extending personal jurisdiction in diversity and federal question cases should present any constitutionally significant distinction.

As the Rules Advisory Committee noted, it is the fact that a federal court is hearing the case that brings into play the Fifth rather than the Fourteenth Amendment. Of course, this assumes that the national contacts test, in one form or another, is the Fifth Amendment limitation.

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The Supreme Court has played coy on this issue. In Stafford v. Briggs , [] the Court resolved the case on statutory grounds. In two cases in involving foreign defendants, the Court wrote brief footnotes stating that the Fifth Amendment standard was not relevant because Fourteenth Amendment standards were applicable under what is now Rule 4 k 1 A ; thus, the Court had no need to decide the issue and said the same in throwaway dictum in Bristol-Myers.

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Lower courts take various views. One is the pure national contacts standard, which allows jurisdiction in any federal court anywhere in the United States, if the defendant has minimum contacts with the United States. There are other strong suggestions that some form of the national contacts test applies under the Fifth Amendment.

Moreover, the venerable bulge rule [] would be of no effect. Congress also clearly believes that it has the power to authorize federal court personal jurisdiction on a nationwide basis as it has several times so legislated. The Supreme Court plurality in J. McIntyre also appeared to endorse the possibility of broader personal jurisdiction for federal courts. All of this appears to be an endorsement of the constitutionality of an extension of Rule 4 k 2 to diversity and alienage cases and a rejection of the suggestion that the applicable law makes a difference.

The plaintiff in J. McIntyre could only have brought the action in federal court on alienage grounds, as products liability law is state law. The only arguably significant difference is that extending Rule 4 k 2 would not be direct action by Congress. But as discussed above, it would be a permissible exercise of the power granted by Congress under the Rules Enabling Act, and Congress would be able to veto the change. Nicastro been allowed to bring his action in New Jersey federal court under an extended Rule 4 k 2 or a federal statute.

Of course, this only accounts for four votes on the Court and flows from a sovereignty rationale that the concurrence in the judgment did not remark on and the dissent rejected. McIntyre concurrence or the dissent would find an extended Rule 4 k 2 constitutional, even if they rested their votes on a fairness rather than a sovereignty rationale.

An extended Rule 4 k 2 would apply directly only to foreign defendants because had the J. McIntyre defendant been domestic, the plaintiff could have sued the defendant corporation in its home state. As a practical matter, an extended Rule 4 k 2 would apply mainly in cases that look like J. As the dissenting Justices already think it constitutional to sue in that state, they surely would find jurisdiction under an extended Rule 4 k 2. For the plurality Justices, if there were federal law authorization, their sovereignty concerns would be addressed.

Extending Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4 k 2 to diversity and alienage cases would not resolve all the uncertainties and—in my view—unfair results produced by current jurisdictional law. But it would likely cure the worst of the injustices, which is leaving a U. Extending Rule 4 k 2 requires meeting and overcoming two substantial legal objections. The first is whether the extension would be allowed under the Rules Enabling Act. However, the Supreme Court has twice promulgated rules giving federal courts personal jurisdiction that their state court counterparts do not have.

Although the Supreme Court has never ruled on the question, the bulk of the authorities—including hints from the Supreme Court itself—suggest that the Fifth Amendment which would be applicable instead of the Fourteenth is satisfied by minimum contacts with the United States as a whole, rather than the more familiar rule that there must be minimum contacts with the forum state.

An extended Rule 4 k 2 would be a practicable way to promote the fair administration of justice. See, e. Borchers, Jones v.


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See Patrick J. Davis L. For a related argument regarding Pennoyer , see Steven E. Sachs, Pennoyer Was Right , 95 Tex. Borchers, J. However, of some personal consolation, the Supreme Court cited one of my articles. See Daimler AG v. Bauman, S. Legal F. My point was that a relatively expansive notion of general jurisdiction was necessary to fill in the gaps left by overly constricted specific jurisdiction principles. Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.

Brown , U. See Stephen E. Brown, 60 U. See Arthur T. See Daimler AG , S. Superior Court, S. Bauman, 76 Ohio St. Doernberg, Resolving International Shoe, 2 Tex. See J. McIntyre Mach.

Nicastro, U. Drugg, S. Toshiba Corp. See 28 U. I briefly mentioned the possibility after the J. McIntyre decision, see Borchers, supra note 4, at —75, and at least three other commentators also noted it. See Symeon C. Professor Steven E. Sachs, picking up on my brief post- J. McIntyre suggestion, discusses it and argues that an expanded Rule 4 k 2 would not do enough to solve the problems. His proposal is for a federal statute, but—as I discuss—I believe that a federal statute is politically infeasible.

See infra notes —38 and accompanying text. One commentator has suggested revising Rule 4 k 1 A , but only in federal question cases. See Daniel Klerman, Walden v. MV Ya Mawlaya, 99 F. See Peter Hay, Patrick J. Symeonides, Conflict of Laws —80 5th ed. See infra notes —70 and accompanying text. See infra notes —87 and accompanying text.

See infra note —70 and accompanying text. Admittedly, I lambasted the J. See Sachs, supra note 18, at — A very limited effort to expand jurisdiction in products liability cases has failed to advance regardless of which major political party is in power. See infra note Superior Court , S. Pincus et al. Steinman, The End of an Era?

See infra notes —47 and accompanying text. The back story of the case is extensively recounted in Charles W. Adams, World-Wide Volkswagen v. Woodson —The Rest of the Story , 72 Neb. Instead, the defendants were trying to create full diversity and get the case removed from state to federal court, and they succeeded in doing so. The plaintiffs still had two deep-pocketed defendants—Audi and Volkswagen—as parties in the case, and in an era of joint-and-several liability, having the distributor and the dealer as parties only served to keep the case in a plaintiff-friendly state court venue.

World-Wide Volkswagen Corp. The Supreme Court seemed to back away from the sovereignty rationale just two years later. See Ins. Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinee, U.

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Recently, however, the sovereignty rationale has made a comeback. See World-Wide Volkswagen Corp. Justice Stevens endorsed neither test, reasoning that Asahi had minimum contacts under either test based on the volume of the sales of its valves in California. See id. One might argue that J. If the single sale had been a multi-million-dollar jet, it is difficult to say whether the concurrence would have found the single sale sufficient to establish jurisdiction.

See generally Charles W. Washington, U. The Court now uncritically cites Perkins for the proposition that a corporation is subject to general jurisdiction in the state of its principal place of business. See , e. Brown, U. Far E. Air Transp. However, the case is not quite so clear as the Court now interprets it. See Borchers, supra note 4, at The majority held that the plaintiffs conceded in their brief that the forum state activities were unrelated. While the brief was not a model of clarity, Justice Brennan argued in his dissent that the plaintiffs had not conceded the issue.

He noted that they could have reasonably argued the contacts were related because one of the allegations was negligent pilot training—the case arose out of the crash of a helicopter the defendant owned—and at least some training had taken place in the forum state of Texas. See Brown v. Meter, S. Goodyear , U. The Court held that Goodyear had not timely raised the question of whether the activities of the subsidiaries could be imputed to the parent U.

Tyrrell, S. See Burnham v. Superior Court, U. See Burnham , U. See Milliken v. Meyer, U. See Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. See supra note 8. Reyno, U. Calder , U.


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See Calder , U. Six Unknown Fed. Narcotics Agents, U. Walden , S. Keeton v. Woodson, U. See Asahi Metal Indus. See supra notes 42—47 and accompanying text. Justice Scalia joined the opinion holding that minimum contacts were lacking but did not offer a view one way or the other on the reasonableness test. See Asahi , U. However, only Justice Brennan, writing for himself and three other Justices, engaged in a minimum contacts analysis.

Justice Ginsburg cited Asahi and referred to fairness considerations but did not explicitly engage in a two-step analysis. Daimler AG v. See Burger King Corp. Rudzewicz, U. Asahi Metal Indus. See International Shoe Co. It is difficult to miss the parallel to the current conundrum of whether resale alone or resale plus other activities is needed to support jurisdiction in products liability cases.

See supra notes 42—56 and accompanying text. See Borchers, supra note 5, at 28 stating that International Shoe Co. International Shoe , U. See Helicopteros Nacionales de Columbia, S. Hall, U. Carnival Cruise Lines, F. Buttonpro, Inc. Hyatt Corp. This test is analogous to the common law tort rule of causation, requiring but for causation, and proximate cause between the forum contacts and the cause of action.

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Workers of Am. See Carnival Cruise , U. Bristol-Meyers Squibb Co. McIntyre , U. See Walden v. Fiore, S. A Lexis search showed that federal courts had cited Zippo over times and state courts had cited the decision over times. The frequency with which courts cited the case peaked around , but recent cases still follow the decision.

Moawad Grp. June 30, Thus, it seems doubtful that the Zippo court imagined its opinion would exert influence twenty years later. See Keeton v. New Haven Advocate, F. Luban, N. See Borchers, supra note , at identifying thirty-two post- Keeton reported decisions on internet libel jurisdiction, with thirteen concluding jurisdiction existed and nineteen concluding jurisdiction did not exist. See Douglas D. Pawloski, U. Pizzutti, U.

See McFarland, supra note , at —96 discussing how International Shoe transformed the law of personal jurisdiction by authorizing service on non-residents outside the forum state. The bulge rule was adopted in See Sprow v. Hartford Ins. This is not to say that we have a consensus that the Fifth Amendment self-enacts personal jurisdiction authority for the federal courts. Far from it. We face a dearth of case law on this Fifth Amendment point. And at least one scholar , in another great new article, takes the opposite position from Spencer on this point.

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