jurisdiction

RJR Nabisco v. European Community

Issues 

Does RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, apply outside the United States?

The European Community sued RJR Nabisco, a cigarette manufacturer, under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (“RICO”) Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1961 et seq. RICO imposes civil and criminal penalties on racketeering activity. The European Community alleges that RJR Nabisco ran an international money laundering operation, which occurred abroad. This case presents the Supreme Court with the opportunity to determine the jurisdictional limits of RICO. RJR Nabisco maintains that RICO should not apply extraterritorially. The European Community counters that Congress clearly indicated that RICO’s reach could extend extraterritorially when the underlying offense is extraterritorial. The Court’s resolution of this case may alter the jurisdictional status of RICO and will affect business interests on both sides of the Atlantic.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether, or to what extent, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”) applies extraterritorially.

The European Community sued cigarette manufacturer RJR Nabisco under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations ("RICO") Act.    The European Community alleges that RJR Nabisco

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Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court of California, San Francisco County

Issues 

Does a court have the power to adjudicate a case when the case is not causally connected to a defendant’s in-state conduct?

In this case, the Supreme Court will determine whether courts have specific jurisdiction over defendants only when the case arises out of conduct that is causally connected to a defendant’s in-state conduct. The case comes before the Supreme Court after Bristol-Myers Squibb was sued in California for manufacturing a defective anticoagulant, despite having manufactured the anticoagulant in New Jersey and having only a transient connection with California. Bristol-Myers Squibb argues that the California court lacks power to adjudicate this case, because the company’s conduct in California is not causally connected to the plaintiffs’ injuries. California Superior Court, on the other hand, argues that specific jurisdiction does not require proof of causation. Much is at stake in this action: some assert that California’s victory would result in gross injustice to defendants; others claim that BMS’s victory would cause judicial resources to be squandered with duplicative litigation.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether a plaintiff ’s claims arise out of or re-late to a defendant’s forum activities when there is no causal link between the defendant’s forum contacts and the plaintiff ’s claims—that is, where the plaintiff ’s claims would be exactly the same even if the defendant had no forum contacts?

Defendant Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (“BMS”) manufactures anticoagulants—drugs meant to inhibit blood clotting. See Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Super. Ct. of San Francisco Cty., S221038, at 2 (Cal. Aug. 29, 2016).

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Merrill Lynch, et al. v. Greg Manning, et al.

Issues 

Does Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 give federal courts exclusive jurisdiction over state law claims based on violations of the Exchange Act, or may state courts hear those state law claims?

 

In this case, the Supreme Court will decide whether Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) provides federal courts with exclusive jurisdiction over state law claims based on violations of the Exchange Act or whether state courts are permitted to hear such state law claims. See Brief for Petitioner, Merrill Lynch, et al. at i. Merrill Lynch argues that Manning relies on Regulation SHO, a federal regulation, and therefore federal courts have exclusive jurisdiction under the Exchange Act. See id. at 19. On the other hand, Manning argues that, because his claims are based on state law, state courts have jurisdiction over this case, even if some elements of his claim rely on federal law. See Brief for Respondent, Greg Manning, et al. at 25. Ultimately, the Court’s decision has the potential to affect whether uniformity in decision-making is necessary to enforce Regulation SHO and whether state courts can govern duties arising under federal regulations. See Brief of Amicus Curiae The Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America, in Support of Petitioner at 8–9.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Does Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 provide federal jurisdiction over state law claims  seeking  to establish liability based on violations of the Act or its regulations or seeking to enforce duties created by the Act or its regulations?

Greg Manning and others (hereinafter “Manning”), brought a lawsuit against Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith, Inc.Knight Capital Americas L.P.UBS Securities LLC

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Lozman v. City of Riviera Beach

Issues 

Does the definition of “vessel” in 1 U.S.C. § 3 include, and thus grant federal maritime jurisdiction over,  indefinitely-moored structures like Lozman’s houseboat that are capable of transportation where their owners never intend to use them in that way? 

 

The City of Riviera Beach seized Fane Lozman’s houseboat after he did not comply with new city regulations. The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the district court’s holding that the indefinitely moored houseboat was a “vessel” for purposes of maritime jurisdiction under 1 U.S.C. § 3. Lozman argues that courts should interpret “vessel” purposively and that his houseboat was not a vessel because its purpose was not to transport people or goods. The City of Riviera Beach counters that the definition of “vessel” requires a capability test that asks merely if the structure is capable of transporting people or goods. Additionally, both parties and the U.S. Solicitor General argue the subsequent purchase and destruction of Lozman’s houseboat by the City of Riviera Beach does not render the case moot because of a $25,000 security bond that the City posted. The Supreme Court’s decision in this case may reshape the role of state and federal courts in some maritime matters. The decision could also expand current maritime legislation to apply to structures such as casino boats or floating homes, or remove federal legislative protections for maritime lenders.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether a floating structure that is indefinitely moored receives power and other utilities from shore and is not intended to be used in maritime transportation or commerce constitutes a "vessel" under 1 U.S.C. § 3, thus triggering federal maritime jurisdiction.

The res in the putative in rem admiralty proceeding was sold at judicial auction in execution of the District Court’s judgment on a maritime lien and maritime trespass claim, Petn. App. 9a-10a, and subsequently destroyed, Petr. Br. 10-11. Does either the judicial auction or the subsequent destruction of the res render this case moot?

From March 2006 to April 2009, Fane Lozman docked his houseboat at the City of Riviera Beach (“the City”) Marina and used the houseboat as his primary residence. See The City of Riviera Beach v. That Certain Unnamed Gray, Two-Story Vessel Approximately Fifty-Seven Feet in Length649 F.3d 1259, 1262 (11 Cir.

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Kircher v. Putnam Funds Trust

Issues 

Did the Appeals Court have jurisdiction to review the District Court’s order to remand a suit removed under SLUSA, where the district court held the suit in state court was not removable under SLUSA and it thus had no “subject matter jurisdiction,” given that when a case is remanded under the lack of subject matter jurisdiction statute 28 U.S.C. § 1447(d) a party cannot appeal the remand order?

 

Petitioners are a group of investors who owned shares in mutual funds offered or advised by respondents, Putnam Funds Trust. These investors brought a class action suit in Illinois state court asserting  breach  of fiduciary duty and alleging that the mutual funds set prices in a way that allowed arbitrageurs to exploit differences in prices to the detriment of long-term investors. The respondents removed the suit to federal court pursuant to the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA). The judge then remanded the case to state court because the petitioners had not alleged a loss “in connection with the purchase or sale of securities” as required under the Act. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1447(d), such a remand is not appealable if the remand is for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The Seventh Circuit, in conflict with previous decisions by the SecondNinth, and Eleventh Circuits, ruled that the remand was reviewable because the basis of the SLUSA remand  was not  lack  of  subject matter jurisdiction, and therefore 28 U.S.C. § 1447(d) does not apply. In deciding this case, the Supreme Court will address whether 28 U.S.C. § 1447(d) bars appellate review of remand orders in suits removed under statutes such as SLUSA.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether the court of appeals had jurisdiction, contrary to the holdings of three other circuits, to review a district court order remanding for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction a suit removed under the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1998 (“SLUSA”), notwithstanding 28 U.S.C. § 1447(d)'s bar on appellate review of remand orders based on lack of subject-matter jurisdiction and the district courts' conclusion that petitioners' claims are not preempted by and thus not removable under SLUSA.

In 1998, Congress enacted the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (“SLUSA”). Kircher v. Putnam Funds Trust, 373 F.3d 847, 847 (2004).

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Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Saudi Basic Industries Corp.

Issues 

 
In 1980, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) and the Exxon (now Exxon Mobil Corp.) subsidiaries, Exxon Chemical Arabia, Inc (ECAI) and Mobil Yanbu Petrochemical Company (Yanbu) created two joint venture entities: Yanpet and Kemya. SABIC entered into sublicensing agreements with the two entities under which both were to pay royalties for use of an exclusive gas-phase process to manufacture polyethylene. Nearly twenty years later, Exxon Mobil, Yanbu, and ECAI claimed that SABIC actually charged Yanpet and Kemya more than the amount of royalties actually agreed upon.
 
In 2000, SABIC sued Yanbu and ECAI in the Delaware Superior Court seeking a declaratory judgment that the joint venture agreements had not been violated and that the royalty charges were correct. Exxon Mobil, Yanbu, and ECAI countersued in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, seeking the converse declaratory judgment. In 2003, the Delaware Superior Court returned a verdict against SABIC. SABIC has appealed the verdict, which is currently pending. Prior to the state court trial, SABIC moved to dismiss Exxon Mobil's federal court action claiming foreign sovereign immunity. The motion was denied and SABIC then appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The federal appeals court did not address the sovereign immunity issue but vacated the District Court's orders with instructions for dismissal, finding that the Rooker-Feldman doctrine barred federal subject matter jurisdiction over the claims of Exxon and its subsidiaries because such was previously decided in the state court case. The Supreme Court faces the issue of whether the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, which bars lower federal courts from conducting de facto appellate review of decisions by state courts, may be interpreted to incorporate preclusion principles and deny jurisdiction to federal courts because a pending state-court proceeding presents identical issues, notwithstanding the long-established system of dual federal and state jurisdiction.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, which bars lower federal courts from conducting de facto appellate review of decisions by state courts, may be expansively interpreted to incorporate preclusion principles and divest federal courts of jurisdiction solely because a pending state-court proceeding presents identical issues, notwithstanding the long-established system of dual federal and state jurisdiction.
In 1980, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) and the Exxon (now Exxon Mobil Corp.) subsidiaries, Exxon Chemical Arabia, Inc (ECAI) and Mobil Yanbu Petrochemical Company (Yanbu) created two joint venture entities: Yanpet and Kemya. Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Saudi Basic Industries Corp., 364 F.3d 102, 103 (3d. Cir. 2004). Yanpet was the joint venture between SABIC and Yanbu, and Kemya was the joint venture between SABIC and ECAI. Id. Both of these entities are limited liability partnerships engaged in the manufacturing of polyethylene in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Basic Industries Corp. v.

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RJR Nabisco v. European Community (15-138)

Issues 

Does RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, apply outside the United States?

The European Community sued RJR Nabisco, a cigarette manufacturer, under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (“RICO”) Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1961 et seq. RICO imposes civil and criminal penalties on racketeering activity. The European Community alleges that RJR Nabisco ran an international money laundering operation, which occurred abroad. This case presents the Supreme Court with the opportunity to determine the jurisdictional limits of RICO. RJR Nabisco maintains that RICO should not apply extraterritorially. The European Community counters that Congress clearly indicated that RICO’s reach could extend extraterritorially when the underlying offense is extraterritorial. The Court’s resolution of this case may alter the jurisdictional status of RICO and will affect business interests on both sides of the Atlantic.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether, or to what extent, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”) applies extraterritorially.

The European Community sued cigarette manufacturer RJR Nabisco under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations ("RICO") Act.  See European Community v. RJR Nabisco, Inc., 764 F.3d 129, 132 (2d Cir.

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Merrill Lynch, et al. v. Greg Manning, et al. (14-1132)

Issues 

Does Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 give federal courts exclusive jurisdiction over state law claims based on violations of the Exchange Act, or may state courts hear those state law claims?

In this case, the Supreme Court will decide whether Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) provides federal courts with exclusive jurisdiction over state law claims based on violations of the Exchange Act or whether state courts are permitted to hear such state law claims. See Brief for Petitioner, Merrill Lynch, et al. at i. Merrill Lynch argues that Manning relies on Regulation SHO, a federal regulation, and therefore federal courts have exclusive jurisdiction under the Exchange Act. See id. at 19. On the other hand, Manning argues that, because his claims are based on state law, state courts have jurisdiction over this case, even if some elements of his claim rely on federal law. See Brief for Respondent, Greg Manning, et al. at 25. Ultimately, the Court’s decision has the potential to affect whether uniformity in decision-making is necessary to enforce Regulation SHO and whether state courts can govern duties arising under federal regulations. See Brief of Amicus Curiae The Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America, in Support of Petitioner at 8–9.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Does Section 27 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 provide federal jurisdiction over state law claims seeking to establish liability based on violations of the Act or its regulations or seeking to enforce duties created by the Act or its regulations?

Greg Manning and others (hereinafter “Manning”), brought a lawsuit against Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith, Inc., Knight Capital Americas L.P., UBS Securities LLC, E*TRADE Capital Markets LLC

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Mata v. Holder

Issues 

Does a circuit court have jurisdiction to review a  Board of Immigration Appeals’ rejection of a petitioner’s request to equitably toll the 90-day deadline on his motion to reopen removal proceedings on the basis of ineffective assistance of counsel?

The Supreme Court will determine whether the courts of appeals have jurisdiction to review a non-citizen’s request that the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”) equitably toll the 90-day filing deadline on the non-citizen’s motion to reopen the non-citizen’s removal proceeding due to ineffective assistance of counsel. Peterson, arguing by Court appointment in support of the lower court’s judgment, argues that the Fifth Circuit properly characterized Mata’s request to reopen his removal proceeding as an invitation for the BIA to reopen the proceeding sua sponte, and that the Fifth Circuit lacks jurisdiction to review the BIA’s discretionary decision. However, Mata contends that the Fifth Circuit erred in construing his request for equitable tolling as a request for the BIA to reopen the proceeding sua sponte, and that Congress specifically grants courts of appeals the jurisdiction to review final orders of removal and BIA decisions on motions to reopen via statute. Holder agrees with Mata that the Fifth Circuit mischaracterized Mata’s request to reopen and that Congress provided courts of appeals a statutory basis upon which to review final orders of removal and BIA decisions on motions to reopen. Holder further contends that courts should apply a deferential abuse-of-discretion standard in reviewing agency determinations. The Supreme Court’s ruling implicates the due process rights of non-citizens and the fairness and substantive legality of the immigration system.

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

Whether the court of appeals has jurisdiction to review the Board of Immigration Appeals’ decision denying a request for equitable tolling of the ninety-day statutory period for filing a motion to reopen removal proceedings as a result of ineffective assistance of counsel.

The United States ordered removal of Noel Reyes Mata, a native and citizen of Mexico, from the county in 2010. See Mata v. Holder, 558 F. App'x 366, 367 (5th Cir. 2014). Mata filed a timely petition for appeal of his order of removal with the Board of Immigration Appeals (“BIA”).

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Executive Benefits Insurance Agency v. Arkison

Issues 

Does Article III of the Constitution permit bankruptcy courts to enter final judgments in “core” proceedings as defined in 28 U.S.C. § 157(b)? If not, can bankruptcy courts exercise jurisdiction over litigants through their “implied consent”?

In 2011, the Supreme Court held in Stern v. Marshall that bankruptcy courts are constitutionally barred from granting final judgments on certain “core” state law claims. Since then, lower courts have tried to determine the scope of the holding, which addresses bankruptcy courts’ ability, as non-Article III courts, to preside over issues traditionally considered to be core bankruptcy issues. Petitioner, Executive Benefits Insurance Agency, (“EBIA”) was a third party to a bankruptcy proceeding. The bankruptcy court found that the debtor in the proceeding had fraudulently transferred $373,291.28 to EBIA before filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The bankruptcy trustee, Arkison, sued EBIA to recover those funds, and the bankruptcy court granted a judgment against EBIA. EBIA appealed and invoked Stern v. Marshall, claiming that the bankruptcy court could not enter a final judgment on a fraudulent transfer claim. The district court and Ninth Circuit affirmed the bankruptcy court, reasoning that EBIA had impliedly consented to the bankruptcy court’s jurisdiction. The Supreme Court’s ruling in this case will clarify the limits of Stern v. Marshall and define “core” bankruptcy proceeding. The Court will also determine what kind of consent is necessary for bankruptcy courts to have jurisdiction over claims requiring adjudication by Article III judges. 

Questions as Framed for the Court by the Parties 

In Stern v. Marshall, 131 S. Ct. 2594 (2011), this Court held that Article III of the United States Constitution precludes Congress from assigning certain “core” bankruptcy proceedings involving private state law rights to adjudication by non-Article III bankruptcy judges. Applying Stern, the court of appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that a fraudulent conveyance action is subject to Article III. The court further held, in conflict with the Sixth Circuit, that the Article III problem had been waived by petitioner’s litigation conduct, which the court of appeals construed as implied consent to entry of final judgment by the bankruptcy court. The court of appeals also held, in conflict with the Seventh Circuit, that a bankruptcy court may issue proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law, subject to a district court’s de novo review, in “core” bankruptcy proceedings where Article III precludes the bankruptcy court from entering final judgment. The court of appeals’ decision presents the following questions, about which there is considerable confusion in the lower courts in the wake of Stern: 

  1. Whether Article III permits the exercise of the judicial power of the United States by bankruptcy courts on the basis of litigant consent, and, if so, whether “implied consent” based on a litigant’s conduct, where the statutory scheme provides the litigant no notice that its consent is required, is sufficient to satisfy Article III.
  2. Whether a bankruptcy judge may submit proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law for de novo review by a district court in a “core” proceeding under 28 U.S.C. 157(b). 

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Facts

Nicholas Paleveda and Marjorie Ewing, a married couple, operated a series of companies, including Aegis Retirement Income Services, Inc. (“ARIS”) and the Bellingham Insurance Agency, Inc. (“BIA”). See Exec. Benefits Ins. Agency v. Arkison (“EBIA”), 702 F.3d 553, 556 (9th Cir.

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