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25 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Check List Before filing a lawsuit
Choice of Law
Proper Notice/ Service
Subject Matter Jurisdiction
Territiorial Jurisdiction
Territorial Jurisdiction
Court's power to render judgment over a person or property
Power is based on the forum state's connectivity to the person or property
In personam; Type, What is it
The court's jurisdiction over a defendant (personal)
In rem; Type, what is it
Court's jurisdiction over a specific piece of property located within the forum state
Allows court to adjudicate the rights of all people who claim an interest in the property that is good "against the world"
Quasi in rem type 1; type, what is it
Court's jurisdiction over property owned by the defendant located within the forum state, and is related to the underlying dispute
Settles property rights only of specific persons in the designated property
Quasi in rem type 2; type, what is it
Court's jurisdiction over the defendant's property located within the forum state
Property has no related to the underlying dispute
Involves disputes where the court did not have personal jurisdiction over the defendant, but had jurisdiction over the defendant's property
Property is brought within the the court's jurisdiction by "attachment" and the absent defendant has the choice of coming into the state and losing the litigation (and property) through default judgment
Court's judgment is limited to the value of the property
Raw power doctrine
State’s power over persons or property located within its borders
Power cannot be asserted beyond the borders of the state
If raw power doctrine is satisfied then any decree entered by the court is valid and does not violate Due Process
Due Process
Expressed under 5th (Federal) and 14th (State) Amendments; Requires that the exercise of personal jurisdiction by the court over defendant be “fair”—that defendant have sufficient “minimum contacts” with the forum state
State would violate Due Process if its courts entered judgments against defendants without following fair judicial procedure—which includes placing limits on places where a defendant can be required to defend a suit
Establishing personal jurisdiction
1. Physical presence- If defendant is present within the forum state when served—then the forum court has jurisdiction over him (D doesn’t have to be a resident of the state)
Personal service over the forum state’s airspace is valid
D can be served upon voluntarily coming into the state—however short his stay is in the forum state (Transient Jurisdiction)
Can’t fool a D into coming to the forum state for purposes of serving him
2. Ds consent to jurisdiction-Personal jurisdiction is waivable:
(a) Failure to make an immediate objection to jurisdiction when appearing in the forum state to defend a claim; D is deemed to have consented to territorial jurisdiction (General Appearance) (b) D’s consent to be sued within the forum state if done so knowingly and freely (c) Consent by contract: D can consent beforehand to jurisdiction by contract (unless it’s an adhesion contract where D has only one option)
In Carnival, the court upheld the enforceability of a forum-selection clause on the back of the cruise ticket b/c D contractually consented to jurisdiction when they bought the ticket [Court gave 4 reasons: (1) Interest of D; (2) Dispels any confusion; (3) Conserves judicial resources; (4) Reduced fares]
3. D's domicile in forum state- If D’s permanent home is located in the forum state and he has a subjective intent to stay there for the indefinite future (no immediate plans to move) then he is deemed to be domiciled in that state and subject to jurisdiction by courts of that state
An individual may only have one domicile—while a corporation has two: state of incorporation and state of principal place of business
Out-of state D's 2 requisites
1. Forum state must have a long-arm statute which authorizes court to exercise jurisdiction over an out-of-state D (must comply with Due Process/14th requirements)
2. D must have sufficient “minimum contacts” with forum state
Generally, in federal court, the long-arm statute of the state in which the federal court sits is applied (Personal jurisdiction of a federal court is limited to the jurisdictional requirements of the state in which the federal court is located); Federal judge has to do the same minimum contacts analysis as a state judge
Minimum contacts analysis
Court can exercise personal jurisdiction over a D that is served outside the forum state when the D has minimum contacts with the state that don’t offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice
Minimum contacts don't apply to P- all that matters is the D's activities/ contacts with the forum state
Factors for determiing fair play and substantial justice
Has to do with minimum contacts
1. Quality & Nature of Activities in Forum State
Quality: how much, how frequent
Nature: selling/buying?
2. Benefits & Protections
To what extent did D “purposely avail” themselves to the benefits and protections of the forum state (police/fire protection, state’s laws, etc.)
Enjoying the benefits and protections of the forum state places obligation on D to respond to suits which protect these benefits & protections
3. Continuous & Systematic
Were contacts with the forum state isolated/one-time occurrence—or were they continuous and systematic contacts
4. Estimate of Inconvenience
How inconvenient would it be for the D to return and defend a suit in the forum state (fairness factors)
General jurisdiction
Has to do with minimum contacts
If court determines through evaluation of the 4 factors of fair play and substantial justice that D’s contacts with the forum state are substantial enough, it will support personal jurisdiction over the D (won’t matter that the cause of action doesn’t arise out of D’s contacts with the forum state)
Specific Jurisdiction
Has to do with minimum contacts
Cause of action that gives rise to the dispute arises out of the activities an individual/corporation has with the forum state
Satisfying this requirement alone is enough for the forum state to assert personal jurisdiction (Don’t have to prove general jurisdiction criteria)
Doesn’t matter whether D conducts any business in the forum state
Did P’s cause of action arise out of D’s activities/contacts in the forum state?—If yes, Specific Jurisdiction (Ex: D driving thru forum state and causing car accident)
Purposeful availment
Additional consideration affecting minimum contacts analysis
In addition to assessing the relatedness and persuasiveness of the D’s contacts, must also determine whether D has purposefully availed himself to the privilege of conducting activities within the forum state—thus invoking the benefits and protections of its laws
Primary criteria for Purposeful Availment is whether the D was conducting business in such a manner that he was utilizing the benefits and protections of the law in the forum state
Purposeful Availment requires that D’s activities within the forum state be:
1. Voluntarily entered into by the D
2. A lawsuit in the forum state must be reasonably Foreseeable by the D
Foreseeability alone is not sufficient to establish personal jurisdiction
Whether a D could potentially foresee its products being taken into the forum state is immaterial
In Worldwide, D could probably have foreseen that people would take its cars to OK; But could not have foreseen being sued in that state (Also, D didn’t purposely avail itself to the benefits and protections of OK)
In Burger King, D was found to have “purposely availed” himself to FL courts despite operating a franchise in MI—because it was implicitly stated in his contract with BK that he was receiving the benefits/protections of FL law; Thus D should have reasonably foreseen being haled into court in FL
Purposeful direction
Minimum contacts
A D may have sufficient contacts with the forum state to support minimum contacts jurisdiction there even if he did not act within that state; If a D commits an act outside the forum state that he knows will cause harmful effects, he will be subject to jurisdiction there for claims arising out of that act.
Gray Radiator Doctrine: Introducing a product into the stream of commerce knowing it could end up in a state and cause harm there does not offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice and may satisfy minimum contacts in the forum state; Producer of the product could have reasonably foreseen a need to defend their product in the forum state
However, the mere placement of a product into the stream of commerce by D or the “mere awareness” on the part of D that the product might reach forum state—without anything more—is not an act purposely directed by D toward the forum state; Requires additional conduct by D indicating intent (e.g. designing product specifically for forum state, or advertising in the forum state)
In Asahi, the fact the foreign D was aware that their valve might be used on a tire that was sold in CA was not enough to require them to defend a suit there b/c of a malfunction— Also D didn’t do anything to purposely avail itself to the CA market
Asahi decision is distinguishable from Gray Radiator because court felt jurisdiction was unreasonable (major burden on foreign D to have to travel to CA to defend lawsuit); Also Asahi was a plurality opinion—so technically it doesn’t overrule Gray Radiator
Actions of the P
Minimum contacts
D can never be haled into court when P has brought their product into the forum state and been injured there; only applies when D has no minimum contacts with the forum state
In Worldwide, D had nothing to do with the car being in OK—It was the P who drove the car to OK and the D conducted no business/activity in the forum state
Unilateral activity of a third party
Unilateral activity of a 3rd party in the forum state who has some relationship with the nonresident D is not sufficient to establish minimum contacts necessary for personal jurisdiction (Helicopteros)
Only D’s contacts in the forum state are relevant in minimum contacts analysis
HYPO: Buy a toy in Japan; bring it back to US and injure someone with it here— P sues you in Japan (Offensive to DPC)
Fairness factors (consider after minimum contacts met)
1. Burden on D to have to come to forum state to defend suit
2. Forum state’s interest in adjudicating the suit
3. P’s interest in obtaining convenient and effective relief
4. Interest of interstate judicial system in efficient relief
5. Shared interest of the states in furthering fundamental substantive social policies
Long-arm statutes
Provide states with authority to exercise jurisdiction over an out-of-state D; thus requiring a person/corporation to defend a suit in that state
2 Step Analysis (for determining proper long-arm jurisdiction):
1. Is there a state statute that authorizes it to exercise jurisdiction under the circumstances of the case (D’s activities must be covered under the statute)
2. Is the state long-arm statute Constitutional under the Due Process Clause of 14th Amendment; Forum state can’t compel D to defend a suit unless he has minimum contacts with the forum state that don’t offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice
Any part of a long-arm statute which exceeds the boundaries of the 14th Amendment DPC can be struck down as unconstitutional
Pure in rem
Establishing in rem jurisdiction
The “thing”/property must be within the forum state for the court of that state to exercise jurisdiction over the thing/property
Quasi in rem type one
Establishing in rem jurisdiction
Due process/jurisdiction satisfied the same way as pure In Rem—property must be within the forum state
Quasi in rem type 2
Establishing in rem jurisdition
P can satisfy raw power and due process by attaching D’s property in the forum state and suing him (even though he is not personally located in the forum state)—only can sue up to the value of the property
Debt, though intangible, is property that follows the debtor and thus can be seized when the debtor is in the confines of the forum state
Quasi In Rem #2 suits are subject to minimum contacts analysis—the mere presence of property in the forum state can’t be enough to establish territorial jurisdiction when the property has nothing to do with the lawsuit (simply having property in the state is a contact, but if it is not the subject of the lawsuit it is minimal and can’t be seized); Shafer v. Heitner severely limited the application of Quasi In Rem #2 suits
When quasi in rem type 2 can still be used
Establishing in rem jurisdiction
1. If there is no other forum available for P to bring suit—Presence of D’s property within the forum state can be a sufficient basis for jurisdiction when no other forum is available to P
2. If P has a judgment against a D in one state, he can go to another state where D has property and seize that property to satisfy his judgment even if no contacts are present in the state
3. If P fears D will leave the country, he can attach property for use in satisfying a judgment
Objections to jurisdiction
1. Special appearance- D appearing for the specific purpose of objecting to personal jurisdiction
First thing that must be done is filing a motion to dismiss due to lack of personal jurisdiction (if it’s not the 1st thing done, you have waived jurisdiction)
If court decides that they do have jurisdiction, you must defend the case and save the motion for an issue on appeal
2. Limited Appearance (Quasi In Rem #2)- D appearing for limited purpose of defending suit up to value of property that has been seized in a Quasi In Rem #2 action (D doesn’t subject himself to personal jurisdiction)