HISTORICAL FOCUS: STATE POWER
Pennoyer v. Neff:
· “Physical presence is the test:” Either person is served while in the state or the person’s land Is attached
· Binary: Either there is jurisdiction or there isn’t:
· Territorial Limit on process:
o Every state possesses exclusive jurisdiction and sovereignty over persons and property w/in its territory.
o No State can exercise direct jurisdiction and authority over persons or property outside their territory. However this has been weakened by modern shift to minimum contacts
· Quasi In Rem: prejudgment seizure of the defendants property would be sufficient
· Before Pennoyer: Collateral attack.
· After Pennoyer: Direct Appeal
· Under P, a state court can assert personal jurisdiction over D if…
· D is served w/ process while present in state
· D’s property, located w/in the state, is attached b4 P commences the suit.
· Suit adjudicates “status” of a state resident (ie divorce action)
· A valid statute requires submission to jurisdiction as a condition of doing business in the state
Modern Focus: Defendant Contacts
· FACTS: State of Washington levied unemployment tax on International Shoe.
· Shoe argues:
o Due Process Violation.
o Insufficient state contacts for being “present” in the state,
o no personal jurisdiction
· Supreme Court rejects Int’l Shoe’s argument and the “presence” test. Replaced with new Test:
o MINIMUM CONTACTS with forum State
o FAIR PLAY AND SUBSTANTIAL JUSTICE
§ No jurisdiction: Casual presence or isolated activity, where activity is unrelated to lawsuit
§ General Jurisdiction: Very substantial, continuous in-state corporate activity, but activity unrelated to lawsuit
§ Specific Jurisdiction: Light contacts support jurisdiction only over D if claims related to those contacts
§ General Jurisdiction: Heavy contacts support jurisdiction over D whether the claims related or unrelated.
§ “Heavy Contacts” – Continuous and Systematic
· Individuals: Permanent Residence, can always be sued there and on all claims
· Corp.: Principal place of business and state of incorporation, can always be sued there and on whatever claims
· Extended reach of Pennoyer, No longer Binary decision. Extended reach of jurisdiction but not explicitly.
· Implicit Consent: bc the individual (corporation) chooses to participate/interact – implied consent to jurisdiction. The corporation has responsibilities once it voluntarily starts some sort of business w/in a different state than where the corp. is based. (Purposeful availment)
No Contacts Single Casual or Continuous and Systematic &
Act (Related) Isolated (Unrelated) Limited (Related) Continuous
No Jurisdiction Specific No Jurisdiction Specific Jurisdiction General Jurisd.
McGee v. International Life Insurance – Poster Child of Thin Contacts “Single Contact”
· FACTS: P in CA, Life Ins. Policy in TX. P commits suicide and Int. Life will not pay his life ins. No agents, business, etc. in CA, only thing is this insurance policy they have with P. International Life bought out P’s previous insurance co. and they wanted P to reissue life insurance policy with them.
· Purposeful Availment: Court acknowledges the mailing back and forth, but, the factual hook is that ins. Co issued the contact to have him contract with them.
o Important to look at who contacted whom
o Purposeful availment
Hanson v. Denkla – PURPOSEFUL AVAILMENT
· FACTS: Unilateral move from the Plaintiff (PE to FL) does not make Trust Co (in DE) have purposeful availment. Donner established the contact with DE Trust (opposite of McGee).
· FL court did not have jurisdiction to settle dispute over the trust
· PURPOSEFUL AVAILMENT: D must purposefully avail themselves of the laws of the state.
o Contacts that are intended to reach the forum state.
o Purposefully directing your activities to a specific forum.
o Some act by which the D purposefully avails itself of the privilege of conducting activities w/in the forum state, thus invoking the benefits of the laws
World-Wide Volkswagon v. Woodson – STREAM OF COMMERCE & FORSEEABILITY
· FACTS: Robinson’s bought car in NY, moving to OK, got in accident.
· Robinson’s want State court: (requires overlapping Citizenship): Plaintiff Jury-Friendly Pool
· Defendants want Federal Court: Requires Complete Diversity, Less friendly Pool
· Stream of Commerce:
o A forum State may assert personal jurisdiction over a corporation that “delivers its products into s.o.c. with expectation that they will be purchased by consumers in the forum state
o Courts have understood Due Process as…
§ Interpreted in this case to allow exercise of personal jurisdiction to be based on no more than D’s act of placing product into s.o.c.
§ As applied in this case, to require the action of D to be more purposefully directed at the forum State than the mere act of placing a product in s.o.c.
· Forseeability :
o Standing alone, the forseeability that a suit might be filed in a forum is not sufficient. The forseeability that is critical to due process analysis is that D’s conduct and connection w/ forum state are such that he should reasonably anticipate being haled into court there.
· Petitioners for Volkswagon carry on NO ACTIVITY whatsoever in OK. Respondents seek to base jurisdiction on one, isolated occurrence and this is not reasonable.
o Minimum Contacts Test should be broader
o Defendant’s contacts viewed too narrowly
o Separate “reasonableness analysis”?
§ Due Process not just about defendants
§ Other interests (plaintiffs, state) also important:
· States interest: Accident there, hospital where victims went, D knows product will be used outside of area (it’s a car, it travels far)
Asahi Metal Industry Co v. Superior Court – Reasonableness Confirmed, Min contacts not always enough
· **Stream of commerce was not why this case went the way it did it was the unfairness**
· FACTS: Zucher motorbike accident, defective tire, sues Cheng Chen and Retailer. Zucher settles with these 2 parties. However, Cheng Chen enjoins Asahi, and now they are in dispute in CA. Cheng Chen wants Asahi to indemnify them, to pay back the money they paid Zucher.
· Jurisdiction is not fair: Considering the international context, the heavy burden on the alien D, and the slight interests of P and the forum state, exercise of personal jurisdiction by CA ct over Asahi in this instance is unreasonable and unfair.
· CA has no interest, CA parties hav
lding: Subject to jurisdiction in OH on claim of failure to pay dividends
· Sufficient Contacts: Benguet’s business in OH was sufficient contacts, doing business from OH and since the phillipines business shut done, the principal place of business is OH. Conducted business in OH, all phillipines business stopped.
· Odd Twist: Up to OH what they want to do, Advisory Opinion (not upheld or overruled), they simply told them if they want jurisdiction you don’t have to take it
· Jurisdiction by necessity
Helicopteros Nacionales de Columbia, S.A. v. Hall – Is there such a thing as General Jurisdiction?
· FACTS: Company in Columbia. Crash of helicopter owned and operated by company w/ Texas , NY, and FL contacts
· Held: no jurisdiction
· What’s Enough?: Is there really general jurisdiction under the continuous and systematic contacts theory? In this case, 80% of planes bought there was not enough, trained pilots there, constant negotiations not enough, were not enough.
· Specific Jurisdiction: If the helicopter had been purchased in TX, or if the crash happened in TX there would have been specific jurisdiction.
o All parties agree that respondents claims against Helicol did not “arise out of” and are not related to, Helicol’s activities w/in Texas. Specific Jurisdiction would’ve been more appropriate
Transient “Tag” Jurisdiction
Burnham v. Superior Court
· Facts: F and D marry in WV in ’76. Move to NJ in ’77, children are born, separate in ’87. Agree to file for divorce in NJ for “irreconcilable differences.” F and kids move to CA, D files for divorce in NJ claiming “desertion,” D takes business trip to CA, visits kids, D is served by F with process in CA, D challenges jurisdiction
· 4-4-1 split for Jurisdiction. 1) always done it this way (presence is most important) 2) min contacts apply to all personal jurisdiction, here there are contacts and jurisdiction is fair and reasonable 3) “easy case” wont say why though
· Brennen: (always wanted broad jurisdiction): Dennis enjoyed safeguards of the state while in CA (Al’s Asymmetry). However, this could be a slippery slope. What if he was only there for 15 minutes. No stipulations for this
· Pennoyer: Rule in Pennoyer is alive and well, in regards to service in particular state no matter how long he/she is there
· No tag or transient jurisdiction for corporations (even if the agent is there on business), but as seen in this case, it is applied to individuals Correct No tagging Corporation
· After Burnham: personal jurisdiction has greatly expanded, as long as you are in the state you can be served, even if the claim is unrelated to where you are.
· We know personal jurisdiction of a non resident of that state is good but, we don’t know why