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Author Topic: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant  (Read 779 times)

old_student

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Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« on: October 20, 2007, 01:41:10 AM »
Glannon's Civil Pro book says that one of the requirements of a proper court for a lawsuit is "the need to find a court that can exercise personal jurisdiction over the defendant."

I know (I think) that states can assert PJ over a defendant in certain circumstances.

However, if the complaint is filed in federal court, do we also say that the federal court is "exercising personal jurisdiction over the defendant?"

(I'm getting a little mixed up between state personal jurisdiction and federal subject matter diversity.)

Thanks!

jimmyjohn

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2007, 02:55:31 AM »
Glannon's Civil Pro book says that one of the requirements of a proper court for a lawsuit is "the need to find a court that can exercise personal jurisdiction over the defendant."

I know (I think) that states can assert PJ over a defendant in certain circumstances.

However, if the complaint is filed in federal court, do we also say that the federal court is "exercising personal jurisdiction over the defendant?"

(I'm getting a little mixed up between state personal jurisdiction and federal subject matter diversity.)

Thanks!

State personal jurisdiction - I am assuming that you are referring to minimum contacts and long-arm statutes. A state may assert personal jurisdiction over a defendant where the state statute is broad enough to encompass the "minimum contacts" the defendant made with the state.  For exam purposes, you will probably be told that the long-arm statute is very broad.  Therefore, in order to determine whehter a state can assert personal jurisdiction over any given defendant you must determine whether that defendant had the requisite minimum contacts within the forum to allow the state to assert its jurisdiction.

Federal subject matter - One of two possibilities here.  Either the diversity requirements are met, or there is a federal question brought by the Plaintiff based on a Congressional statute or the Constitution. 

The analysis is a little different.  In one, you are looking to see if minimum contacts can be satisfied.  In the other, you are checking to see if there is diversity and the necessary amount in controversy or whether the Plaintiff is bringing a claim based on a federal law or US constitutional right. 

old_student

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2007, 06:18:55 AM »
Thanks for the description.

So, say in your description, that federal subject matter description is met because of federal question criteria and the plaintiff can bring suit in federal court.  Would we then say that "the federal court can exercise jurisdiction over the case?"

jimmyjohn

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2007, 09:15:42 AM »
Yes.  The fact that the federal court can exercise jurisdiction just means that it is properly allowed to hear the case under its grant of authority from Congress or from the notions of due process found in the Constitution.  Whether jurisdiction can be exercised or not is the final step in your analysis; you determine it after you have gone through the tests. 

shady2009

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2007, 09:33:21 AM »
The missing piece in the analysis is that federal courts also have to have personal jurisdiction over the defendant.  They borrow the requirements from the state where the district court is located.

TheNewGuy

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2007, 10:26:27 PM »
The missing piece in the analysis is that federal courts also have to have personal jurisdiction over the defendant.  They borrow the requirements from the state where the district court is located.

TITCR

Fed Cts. interpret state law (including the long arm statutes)unless it is a federal issue (if it were for some reason a federal issue I'm not sure if there would be any boundaries for minimum contacts besides the constitution?). 

Main point is Fed courts need to have PERSONAL jurisdiction as well, in order to satisfy due process, and then they ALSO need SUBJECT MATTER jurisdiction (e.g. "arising under", "diversity" or some form of joinder / supplemental jurisdiction)--      don't be fooled.

Also, another thing: there are also the other traditional ways of having personal jurisdiction you don't want to overlook
Here's my "ways to establish PJ" rule:
1. CONSENT (express or implied)
2. PRESENCE (actual, domicle, or doing ongoing/systematic business)
3. LONG ARM STATUTES of states (*also - must be constitutional)


old_student

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Re: Personal Jurisdiction Over the Defendant
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2007, 04:06:53 AM »
Thanks for the explanations!