Preface 5 results
- This “Black Letter” succinctly states the law. In addition, the exceptions to the rules appear in the text. The rules and exceptions appear in condensed form to facilitate quick and easy recollection. A Text Correlation Chart provides a convenient means of relating material contained in the Black Letter to appropriate sections of the casebooks students use.
- The “Black Letter” series aims to help law students recognize and understand the basic principles and issues of law in a law school course. It functions both as a study aid when preparing for classes and as a review of the subject matter when studying for an examination.
- Experienced law school teachers who are recognized national authorities on the subject covered write each “Black Letter.”
- The format of this “Black Letter” is specially designed for review. (1) The Capsule Summary is an abbreviated review of the subject matter that is uefseful both before and after studying the main body of the text. The headings in the Capsule Summary follow the main text of the “Black Letter.” (3)
- We believe that the materials in this Black Letter will facilitate your study of a law school course and assure success in writing examinations not only for the course but also for the bar examination. We wish you success.
- Open Chapter
Perspective 5 results
- We have used some editing conventions to avoid cluttering up the text with detail unrelated to the purpose of a Black Letter. We do not include the subsequent history of cases when it is unrelated to the principle of Federal Courts that the case articulates. Accordingly, if the Supreme Court overrules a case “on other grounds,” that subsequent history does not appear in this volume. Therefore, you cannot take the citations here to be complete Bluebook explications of the courts’ treatment of the cases as wholes. References to articles, sections, and clauses of the United States Constitution appear without the words “of the Constitution,” to save space. We refer to diversity-of-citizenship jurisdiction simply as diversity jurisdiction. We try to avoid cumbersome phrases such as “defendant or defendants” and references such as “defendant(s).” Unless otherwise indicated, a general noun may refer to singular or plural entities, according to the context.
- The study of federal courts includes consideration of the internal structure and operation of the federal judiciary, its relationship to the other branches of the federal government (separation of powers principles) and its interaction with the judicial and political segments of the state governments (federalism principles). The subject constitutes a unique blend of highly technical and detailed statutory analysis and the study of broad theoretical issues of federalism and separation of powers. It is this combination of very different modes of thought—of detail and of “big picture”—that makes the study of federal courts so interesting.
- To gain the most from the course, the student should recognize the importance of both the intricate detail and the broad themes, and not emphasize one over the other. For example, the student must be able simultaneously to comprehend the highly theoretical issues surrounding the controversy over congressional power to regulate the jurisdiction of the federal courts and the technicalities of removal. Whatever area of the course is being studied, however, the student should always attempt to relate the practical legal doctrines to the policies behind the development of the federal judiciary and its role as part of a dynamic federal system, in which the often competing interests of state and federal governments must be reconciled.
- APPROACH TO FEDERAL COURTS
- In deciding how to prepare for an examination in federal courts, a great deal may depend on whether the test will include short answers, or instead will consist exclusively of essay questions. If the examination contains numerous short answer questions, it is likely that the professor is interested in the students’ knowledge and understanding of specific legal doctrines and statutory structure. A student preparing for such an examination should emphasize the details of the various jurisdictional statutes and judge-made principles, and should consider closely the specific elements of each. If the examination is open-book, perhaps less emphasis will have to be placed on rote memorization. Given the limited time generally available during an examination, however, a student should not to rely too heavily on access to any book.
- Open Chapter
Capsule Summary 134 results (showing 5 best matches)
- Federal courts can enjoin litigants from proceeding in other federal courts, although far more often, in parallel litigation, a federal court will stay the action before it rather than enjoin a similar action pending in another federal court. Ordinarily, the first filed case has priority, though there are special circumstances where the default rule does not apply. Where the federal court’s jurisdiction depends on attachment of property, it may enjoin litigants from proceeding in state court as well. A state court may enjoin a federal proceeding if the state court’s jurisdiction depends on attachment. This is the only circumstance in which state courts may interfere with federal proceedings.
- When Congress creates a right and provides non-exclusive federal jurisdiction to enforce it, courts generally will presume that state and federal courts have concurrent jurisdiction. Occasionally, state courts adjudicate issues that appear to fall within the exclusive jurisdiction of federal courts, as when the exclusive federal issue enters the case by way of defense in a state-court proceeding. Be sure to remember that, with the exception of habeas corpus, the inferior federal courts have no appellate jurisdiction with respect to state-court judgments; review of those occurs only in the United States Supreme Court.
- The Supreme Court ordered abstention in , 312 U.S. 496 (1941). Plaintiffs challenged a state-agency order as racially discriminatory. There was a serious question as to whether state law gave the agency the authority to enter the order. If it did, there was a serious constitutional issue. If it did not, there was no constitutional issue. In such circumstances—when the federal court could avoid having to decide a constitutional issue if the state’s courts interpreted unclear state law in a particular way—the Court held that federal courts should give the state courts an opportunity to construe the state law. The federal court stays proceedings while the litigants go to state court for a definitive interpretation of the state law issue. If the party seeking abstention properly reserves the federal constitutional issue for the federal court, the litigation can return to federal court for ultimate determination of the case if the state court judgment leaves the constitutional issue in...
- Removal permits a defendant in a case filed in state court to transfer the case to a federal court. It operates only in that direction: from state to federal court. If removal is improper, either procedurally or because the federal court lacks subject matter jurisdiction, the federal court will remand the case to state court. Thus, the combination of original jurisdiction statutes and removal statutes provide both the plaintiff and the defendant with a right to have a federal court decide an appropriate case. All parties-defendant in the state case must join in the notice of removal. And, obviously, a defendant may remove the case only if the case comes within some basis of federal subject-matter jurisdictional grant, such as diversity or federal-question jurisdiction.
- The Founders clearly envisioned that state courts would play a major role in adjudicating and enforcing federal law. The fact that the Constitution did not mandate creating lower federal courts indicates that the Framers assumed state courts would be involved. Moreover, though Congress has always provided lower federal courts, it did not permanently vest them with general federal-question jurisdiction until 1875. The Supremacy Clause compels the state courts to enforce federal law.
- Open Chapter
Chapter IX. Property Transactions Between Partnerships and Partners 115 results (showing 5 best matches)
- No competent attorney would explicitly ask a lower federal court to review a state-court judgment, but two types of cases have attracted the Supreme Court’s attention, giving rise to the doctrine: (1) federal-court cases in which attorneys have tried a variety of ways to disguise appellate review, and (2) federal-court cases preceded by a state-court judgment involving the parties but in which the federal plaintiff is not asking the federal court to review the state-court judgment. Distinguishing between those two case patterns is not always easy.
- 2. Congress has broad power to allocate jurisdiction over federal-question cases between state and federal courts. Even when Congress vested the lower federal courts with general federal-question jurisdiction, it did not make it exclusive. Congress has assumed consistently either state or federal trial courts can hear most cases arising under federal law.
- This chapter examines issues concerning state courts enforcing federal law and policy. First is the state courts’ role in the federal system; it is clear that the Founders envisioned the state courts as an important resource for enforcing federal law. Second is when the state courts have authority to adjudicate federal claims. This issue depends on whether Congress provides exclusive or concurrent jurisdiction (and what to do when Congress is silent). Third, having seen when state courts may enforce federal rights, the question is whether state courts do so. This implicates the Supremacy Clause. Fourth, can a state court issue an order, such as a writ of habeas corpus, binding on a federal officer? One of the most delicate themes of federalism—the proper relationship between state judicial systems and federal law—runs throughout this chapter.
- 3. State courts determining such issues might appear incongruous. If the state courts can decide these questions, state courts will adjudicate of federal law even though unable to adjudicate for recovery under the same law. (But remember that legislatures confer jurisdiction over claims, not issues.) On the other hand, if the state courts cannot decide these matters, the litigation must either (a) proceed entirely in federal court or (b) in both courts, with the federal court adjudicating the federal issue (a very messy way to handle a case, or (c) proceed in state court, depriving the defendant of the invalidity defense entirely. Were Congress to authorize the first alternative, it might swamp the federal courts and would undermine the well-pleaded-complaint rule, Chapter IV, § III.B, at 98; the mere presence of federal law as a defense would have to be enough to have the case heard in federal court. The second alternative is unworkable. The third might have a rationale: the...
- d. The third possible valid-excuse situation arises when a parallel suit between the same parties is pending in federal court. 1963), upheld dismissal of a FELA claim pending in federal court on an identical complaint. The Ohio court stressed that it was not discriminating against federal law because Ohio courts would also dismiss state-law cases in similar circumstances. Once again, there was no discrimination against federal law. The United States Supreme Court has never spoken to this situation (and no other federal court can speak to it except in , because the inferior federal courts cannot hear appeals of a state-court dismissals). On the other hand, since the key factor for the Supreme Court appears to be whether the state courts have discriminated against federal law, one may expect, if the issue ever reaches the Court, that it will affirm the state court’s power to dismiss.
- Open Chapter
Chapter VII. Partnership Liabilities 70 results (showing 5 best matches)
- When there is a choice of proper courts, the plaintiff gets the first choice of where the litigation will occur. Sometimes, however, the defendant may override the plaintiff’s choice of forum. Removal allows the defendant to move a state-court case to the federal court for the district where the state court sits. Removal is not an appeal from state to federal court; it is a transfer from a state trial court to a federal district court. As a general rule subject to limited exceptions, a case is removable only if it qualifies for federal subject-matter jurisdiction—that is, if the plaintiff could properly have brought the action in federal court in the first place.
- 2. If the federal court finds that removal was improper, either procedurally or because the federal court lacks subject-matter jurisdiction, the federal court will the case to state court. Remand, like removal, operates in one direction only; it’s just that the direction is opposite to removal.
- 1. For many years, a federal court’s jurisdiction on removal was “derivative” of the state court’s subject-matter jurisdiction. (It was a bit like the rule of property law that a grantor cannot transfer better title than he has.) Thus, if the state court had no subject-matter jurisdiction over a case ( a case within the federal courts’ exclusive subject matter jurisdiction), the case was not removable. Rather, the state court would have to dismiss, and the plaintiff would have to refile in federal court.
- operates in one direction only: it permits transfer of a case filed in state court to a federal court. It never operates in reverse; there is no such thing as “removing” a case from federal to state court.
- , 100 U.S. 257 (1879), upheld the constitutionality of federal-officer removal even though the state court proceeding rested entirely on state law. Because federal-officer removal does not rely upon federal-question jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1331, the well-pleaded-complaint rule does not apply. The possible assertion of a federal defense and the federal government’s interest in insulating its programs from attack in state court support federal-officer removal under Article III, § 2.
- Open Chapter
Chapter XV. S Corporations 203 results (showing 5 best matches)
- The district court ruled that federal law governed and that the SBA had priority, analogizing the SBA’s interest to a federal tax lien, which has special priority. The government won. The circuit court reversed. It agreed that federal law governed the issue. (Both courts were following clear Supreme-Court precedent that federal law had to govern the federal government’s rights under nationwide federal programs.) But the circuit court differed on content of the federal law, looking instead to the UCC for priority rules. Private Lender won on appeal.
- (2) One may question, however, why the extension of the federal judicial power to such cases supports the conclusion that federal courts can develop federal common law. The federal “judicial power” also extends to diversity, but made clear that federal courts lacked authority to develop substantive common law in diversity cases.
- b. The Court ruled that the distribution of functions within the federal courts was of enormous importance to the federal government and downplayed the possible importance of the state rule to the state. Having found the federal interest dominant, the Court applied the federal rule.
- The Supreme Court agreed with the lower courts that federal law had to govern the priority issue. But it diverged from them, ruling that the federal courts should adopt state law as the content of the federal common law.
- (4) Federal courts do not develop a distinct federal commonlaw standard in every admiralty case. Rather, the Supreme Court uses a balancing test to decide whether federal common law should supersede otherwise applicable state law. It is not clear how the Court has drawn the line it has in the various cases; that has led to substantial confusion and uncertainty.
- Open Chapter
Chapter XI. Operating Distributions 69 results (showing 5 best matches)
- This Chapter considers whether federal courts may enjoin parties from litigating in another court. The central focus is the Anti-Injunction Act, 22 U.S.C. § 2283, which sharply limits a federal court’s power to enjoin state-court proceedings. The statute reflects an important federalism concern and respect by the federal judiciary for state judiciaries. The statute contains three narrow exceptions. In addition, there are other statutory limitations on federal injunctions against state actions and when a federal court can enjoin another federal court’s proceedings. The latter situation implicates no federalism concerns, because no state court is involved. Finally, there is one circumstance in which a state court can enjoin parties from litigating in a federal court.
- 3. Thus, a federal court has discretion to determine whether to enjoin litigants from proceeding in a parallel federal case. Alternatively, a federal court may stay its own proceedings to allow parallel litigation to proceed. Either avoids duplicative federal litigation.
- , 342 U.S. 180 (1952), acknowledged a federal court’s broad discretion to stay its own proceedings but did not definitively address its power to enjoin another federal court’s proceedings. The lower federal courts generally speak of equitable considerations of wise judicial administration in determining whether to enjoin parties from engaging in parallel federal litigation or to stay litigation in favor of a parallel federal case.
- b. Federal judicial review of state-court interpretations of federal law happens only on direct review by the United States Supreme Court, rather than through the disruptive device of a lower federal court injunction affecting state proceedings.
- c. Because parity of state and federal courts for determining federal questions is a matter for congressional judgment, Congress has provided specified exceptions to the otherwise absolute ban on federal courts’ enjoining state court actions.
- Open Chapter
Chapter VI. Partnership Allocations: Income-Shifting Safeguards 67 results (showing 5 best matches)
- Some commentators criticize supplemental jurisdiction because it relieves state courts from discharging their responsibility to adjudicate matters of state law and prevents improvements of state-court ability to interpret federal law by keeping some federal claims out of the state courts. The opposite, however, seems just as compelling: unduly supplemental jurisdiction precludes federal courts from exercising their primary responsibility to interpret, develop, and apply federal law and limits federal court familiarity with state law that they must deal with in diversity and many federal-question cases.
- in a federal court—without exception—needs a subject-matter ticket of admission. That applies to plaintiff’s claims, counter-and cross-claims, claims by intervenors, claims by or against parties whom the court brings into the action under FED. R. CIV. P. 19, and third-party practice. You are familiar with some of those tickets: 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331-1334, 1337-1338 for example. These are some of the “stand-alone” tickets of admission. If a claim invokes diversity or federal-question jurisdiction, obviously a federal court can hear it. Sometimes a claim does not have a stand-alone ticket, but a federal court may nonetheless hear the claim if it has what the airlines call a “companion ticket”—one that accompanies a stand-alone ticket and must travel on the same itinerary as the stand-alone ticket. Title 28 U.S.C. § 1367—supplemental jurisdiction—is the companion ticket of federal jurisdiction. Supplemental jurisdiction exists only when the claim asserted bears a sufficiently close...federal
- Supplemental jurisdiction permits a federal court to hear claims that have no stand-alone, subject-matter ticket of admission. In other words, it allows the court to hear non-federal, non-diverse claims. Supplemental jurisdiction is proper if the supplemental claim has an appropriate relationship to the claim that is properly in federal court.
- court. In Example 1, filing the case in a California state court would insure the state forum. Filing in some other state’s court would allow the defendant to remove to federal court. Chapter VII, § III.D, at 146. In Example 2, however, doing so would rob P of a federal forum for her federal claim unless the defendant removed the case to federal court. In part for this reason, there has always been broader acceptance of supplemental jurisdiction in federal-question cases than in diversity cases.
- P asserts a federal-question claim against D and a state-law claim against D that arises from the same transaction as the federal-question claim. P and D are co-citizens. The federal-question claim satisfies § 1331 and is properly in federal court; § 1331 is a stand-alone ticket of admission. The state-law claim has no stand-alone ticket. There is no federal question, and because P and D are cocitizens, no diversity jurisdiction either. However, because the state-law claim arises from the same operative facts as the federal-question claim, a federal court has supplemental jurisdiction.
- Open Chapter
Chapter XV. S Corporations Part 2 28 results (showing 5 best matches)
- A plaintiff class action in Delaware state court asserted state-law claims arising out of a tender offer and corporate acquisition. Settlement of the class action included release of any federal claims concerning the tender offer and acquisition. The Delaware courts approved the settlement and entered a valid final judgment. Some of the class members filed a second case in federal court, asserting federal securities law violations, which are within the federal courts’ exclusive jurisdiction. Thus, the Delaware courts could not have adjudicated those claims. Nonetheless, the Supreme Court held that because Delaware law would ascribe claim-preclusive effect to the settlement judgment, a federal court must also. Thus, class members who had not opted out could not assert their federal claims in federal court. The Supreme Court emphasized that § 1738 required this result. shows that federal statutes do not supersede § 1738 unless they clearly so provide.
- Doctors sued a professional association in state court, alleging denial of membership in the association in violation of state law. After the state court entered judgment against them, the doctors sued in federal court, alleging that their exclusion violated federal antitrust laws. Federal antitrust claims have exclusive federal jurisdiction, and thus plaintiffs could not have asserted then in the state case. Nonetheless, the Supreme Court held that the federal court had to determine whether law of the judgment-rendering state would find that the doctors violated the rules of claim preclusion. It was a strange undertaking: the state court had to determine whether failure to assert a claim over which the state court lacked subject-matter jurisdiction meant that the subsequent federal was improper.
- a. Federal securities laws did not supersede, even partially, § 1738; the state-court judgment releasing exclusively federal claims was entitled to full faith and credit. Nothing in federal law evinced congressional intent to contravene the rules of preclusion or to prevent state-court litigants from voluntarily releasing federal claims in approved settlements.
- f. Although federal common law governed the question, the Supreme Court, noting that there was no need for national uniformity on this question, held that the federal common law would adopt the law of the state in which that federal court sat. California law makes a limitations dismissal not “on the merits,” so the federal judgment in California had no claim-preclusive effect.
- A Connecticut state court in enters a valid final judgment in a case between P and D. The parties litigate again, this time in New Jersey federal court, and the issue is whether the Connecticut judgment has a claim-or issue-preclusive effect in the federal case. It does; the federal court must apply Connecticut’s preclusion rules.
- Open Chapter
Appendix B. Practice Examination 26 results (showing 5 best matches)
- The district court concluded, however, that P’s original claims did not qualify for federal subject-matter jurisdiction. But the court ruled that it had jurisdiction over the suit under federal-question jurisdiction because of the federal-question counter-claim. The court erred. held that a federal court does not have subject-matter jurisdiction simply because counterclaim arises under federal law. If the plaintiff’s claims did not qualify for federal subject-matter jurisdiction, the court must dismiss. Stated another way, federal-question jurisdiction is available only through a well-pleaded complaint, not through a counterclaim.
- Other commentators have adopted a type of floating essential-functions thesis—a theory that since Article III provides that the federal judicial power “shall be vested,” the Article requires that federal court ( the Supreme Court or a lower federal court) exercise the judicial power. Under this theory, the Act is invalid because it removes lower court Supreme-Court jurisdiction. However, these theories have never received judicial acceptance.
- 1. State Court Power to Adjudicate the Patent Defense:
- The clear impact of the Act is to exclude the Article-III federal courts (including the Supreme Court) from review of significant constitutional issues. Under traditional thinking, Congress need not vest the federal judicial power in any Article-III court. It need not vest the judicial power in the lower federal courts, because Article III expressly allowed Congress not to create lower courts, and so Congress could abolish such courts. If Congress has power to abolish them, the argument proceeds, it has power to take the lesser step of curbing their jurisdiction. The argument that Congress could exclude Supreme Court appellate jurisdiction turns on Article III’s Exceptions Clause, which allows Congress to make exceptions to the Supreme Court’s appellate jurisdiction.
- Due process requires an independent forum for adjudication of constitutional rights. At least in regard to actions of the federal government, state courts—which the Supremacy Clause requires to enforce the Constitution—meet this independence requirement. However, under , state courts may not directly control federal officials’ actions.
- Open Chapter
Table of Revenue Rulings and Procedures 52 results (showing 5 best matches)
- , providing that after a federal court has referred issues of state law to a state court under Pullman abstention and the state court has adjudicated the state law issues, a litigant has the right to return to federal court for adjudication of federal constitutional issues.
- The principle that the federal courts have federal-question jurisdiction only when the plaintiff’s complaint, properly drawn, establishes the presence of a controlling issue of federal law. Though the general federal question statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1331, makes no explicit reference to the requirement, the Supreme Court has construed the statute to impose the requirement.
- The judge-made principle that a federal court has the discretion to abstain to allow state courts to decide difficult issues of public importance that, if decided by the federal court, could result in unnecessary friction between state and federal authorities.
- An exception to the Anti-Injunction Act authorizing a federal court to issue an injunction to stay litigants from proceeding in a state court where such an injunction is necessary in aid of the federal court’s jurisdiction. 28 U.S.C. § 2283. This exception has generally been limited to cases that are , in which the federal court has acquired jurisdiction of the subject property prior to the state court action.
- The notion that the federal system will operate best if the states are allowed to perform their legitimate functions without undue interference from federal courts. Federal judicial deference to state courts. This principle was used in part to justify the
- Open Chapter
Chapter XIV. Partnership Anti-Abuse Rule 113 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 5. These phrases did not provide clear guidance for lower federal courts, leading Congress in 1966 to codify when a federal court hearing a habeas case can review state-court determinations of fact. The result, 28 U.S.C. § 2254(d), is that the federal court must presume state findings are correct unless one of the following conditions exists:
- appears to increase the number of cases in which federal courts will find a procedural bar to habeas relief, because it permits federal courts to proceed only if the state court opinion appears to rest on federal law or be interwoven with it.
- 1. The habeas petitioner must exhaust state remedies before seeking habeas corpus relief from a federal court. § III.B, at 275. Thus, by the time an applicant brings the question of the legality of his confinement to federal court, a state court will have addressed the merits, absent an explicit waiver of exhaustion.
- 1. The federal courts had recognized exceptional circumstances constituting constructive waiver of the exhaustion requirement. In those rare circumstances, the federal court could adjudicate the habeas petition even if the applicant had not exhausted state remedies.
- 3. Traditional principles of claim and issue preclusion generally do not apply to federal habeas for state prisoners, , 344 U.S. 443 (1953), because giving preclusive effect to state-court findings on the relevant issues would render federal habeas relief meaningless. Thus, the fact that a state court has determined an issue does not bar the federal habeas court from determining the question afresh.
- Open Chapter
Chapter II. Classification 121 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 1. By its terms, Article III vests in Congress the original decision of whether to establish lower federal courts. § II.A.1 & 2, at 59. According to generally accepted historical analysis, the Framers reached an impasse. One group believed that the Constitution should mandate lower federal courts, while the other believed the Constitution should prohibit lower federal courts and that state courts should be the only trial courts to adjudicate federal law, with appellate supervision by the Supreme Court. The “Madisonian Compromise” resolved the deadlock: the delegates left to Congress the question of whether there should be lower federal courts.
- d. Story’s theory also ignores the possibility of state-court availability to determine questions of federal law, subject to Supreme Court review. Had Congress created no lower federal courts, state courts would have heard the various types of cases within the Supreme Court’s appellate jurisdiction.
- 5. Thus, although Congress created lower federal courts in 1789, not until 1875 did it enact a permanent general grant of federal-question jurisdiction. Until then, Congress largely relied on the state judiciaries for original adjudication of federal-question cases; most of the federal trial courts’ cases sounded in diversity.
- 2. Although the Judiciary Act of immediately established lower federal courts, the historical assumption has been—and in large measure continues to be—that Congress did not have to do so. Consequently, the historical assumption has been that if Congress did create lower federal courts, it could abolish them. And if Congress may abolish lower federal courts, the long-held assumption has been that Congress may instead choose the less radical step of limiting their jurisdiction. In other words, the “greater” power (to abolish lower federal courts altogether) includes the “lesser” power (to curb their jurisdiction without abolishing them).
- 2. In the early 19th century, Justice Story argued that Congress lacked any authority to regulate lower federal court jurisdiction. Dictum in , 14 U.S. 304, 328-31 (1816), noted that Article III states that the federal judicial power “ be vested” in the Supreme Court and the lower federal courts that Congress may establish. He construed “shall” to require that all federal judicial power be exercised
- Open Chapter
Chapter VIII. Compensating the Service Partner 124 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 1. Article III, § 2, cl. 1, lists all types of cases the “judicial power” of federal courts reaches, nine types of cases that, as a constitutional matter, federal courts can hear. Ch. II, § B, at 59. No federal court, including the Supreme Court can hear any case—either originally or on appeal—that is not within that enumeration.
- The Supreme Court is the most visible part of the federal judiciary to the general public. Few people know of the district courts and the courts of appeals, but everyone has some sense of the Supreme Court’s work and importance. This Chapter reviews the types of cases the Supreme Court entertains and how they get there. It is no surprise, of course, that the Supreme Court has appellate jurisdiction over cases decided by the federal courts of appeals. It is perhaps surprising that the Court can review decisions of state courts; this obviously implicates federalism concerns. As we will see, though, such review is available only on questions of federal law, in keeping with the Court’s role as the ultimate arbiter of federal law and enforcer of the Supremacy Clause. Most surprising, perhaps, are the provisions for Supreme Court original jurisdiction, a narrow class of cases in which the Supreme Court can serve as the trial court. There are important (and sometimes arcane) rules and...
- [T]here are those situations where the federal issue has been finally decided in the state courts with further proceedings pending in which the party seeking review here might prevail on the merits on nonfederal grounds, thus rendering unnecessary review of the federal issue by this Court, and where reversal of the state court on the federal issue would be preclusive of any further litigation on the relevant cause of action rather than merely controlling the nature and character of, or determining the admissibility of evidence in, the state proceedings still to come. In these circumstances, if a refusal immediately to review the state court decision might seriously erode federal policy, the Court has entertained and decided the federal issue, which itself has been finally determined by the state courts for purposes of the state litigation.
- 2. This statutory grant is appropriate. Supreme Court review of decisions by the federal courts implicates no federalism concerns. Cases from those federal courts necessarily involve at least a colorable claim of federal subject-matter jurisdiction.
- 2. Because the Court’s original jurisdiction over these cases is not exclusive, plaintiffs may bring them in federal district court. They must, of course, have federal subject-matter jurisdiction, such as federal-question jurisdiction. The fact that such cases may be in a district court usually leads the Supreme Court to decline to exercise original jurisdiction. District courts are far better suited to exercise original jurisdiction, and the press of the appellate docket keeps the Supreme Court busy.
- Open Chapter
Chapter XII. Liquidating Distributions and Terminations 180 results (showing 5 best matches)
- abstention funnels federal constitutional issues to the state courts. Their decision is reviewable only by the United States Supreme Court. Because that Court’s review is discretionary, there is little chance that a federal court will address the federal issues.
- 1. Certification is one method for avoiding abstention’s waste and delay, and a federal court may employ it if the state authorizes certification from federal courts. About forty-five states have certification procedures as of May, 2016. It is unavailable in the other five states. Some states allow certification only by federal appellate courts; others permit certification from district courts.
- 2. The Supreme Court held that the district court should have abstained by dismissing (not staying, as in ). Federal judicial review would threaten the Texas regulatory scheme and cause the very confusion the Texas single-court requirement sought to avoid. Federal courts had to honor Texas’s decision to channel judicial review of TRC orders into particular state courts.
- 9. Of course, a federal court could always simply interpret the unclear state law, but that would not be definitive. In such a situation, the federal courts consider it wise to defer to a state-court interpretation of state law. Doing so avoids federal interference with important state functions.
- b. But since there was no federal challenge to the condemnation law, arguably a stay makes no sense. If there were a federal issue, abstention would be appropriate, and the parties could return to federal court for resolution of federal constitutional matters after state-court interpretation of state law. In , however, there was no federal issue for decision, and thus no need on that score for the litigants to return to federal court. On the other hand, perhaps the Court was being sensitive to the concerns underlying diversity jurisdiction, particularly because the owner was the defendant in state court.
- Open Chapter
Chapter XIII. Death of a Partner 116 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 3. The same day, however, the Court decided , 100 U.S. 313 (1879). The African-American state-court criminal defendants had argued that the state court would deny their equal rights because Virginia had never permitted blacks to serve on county juries in trials involving an African-American defendant. The difference from was that the rule excluding blacks from jury service was not in a statute; it was, instead, simply a practice the state followed.
- 4. 42 U.S.C. § 1988(a) provides that when a civil rights statute is “deficient in the provisions necessary to furnish suitable remedies,” the federal courts are to apply “the common law, as modified and changed by the constitution and statutes of the State wherein the court having jurisdiction … is held,” at least so long as such law is not “inconsistent” with federal law. The Supreme Court has found § 1983 “deficient” in several particulars, as to which federal courts will apply state law.
- b. Because prosecution on the basis of race is denial of a federal right, the Court had no problem recognizing, subject to proof, that there might have been denial of the federal right in state court; filing the indictments was the denial.
- 1. Section 1983’s express language applies only to deprivations of federal rights by persons acting under color of § II.A.1, at 245. A person acting under color of federal law is not a proper § 1983 defendant.
- 5. Section 1983 does not create subject-matter jurisdiction either. Federal courts have subject-matter jurisdiction over § 1983 cases under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331, 1343. When Congress passed § 1983 in 1871, before there was a general federal-question statute, Congress also provided a jurisdictional statute, now codified at 28 U.S.C. § 1343(a)(3).
- Open Chapter
Chapter V. Partnership Allocations: § 704(b) 84 results (showing 5 best matches)
- b. Arguably, the Court erred by not making such a distinction. The counterclaiming defendant acts as a plaintiff, asserting a claim for affirmative relief that does arise under federal law. If the counterclaim arises from the same transaction or occurrence as the plaintiff’s claim, making it compulsory under FED. R. CIV. P. 13(a), that appears to deprive the defendant of the federal forum to which it otherwise might be entitled. However, if the plaintiff’s claim really is federal, then the court will dismiss the case, leaving the defendant free to invoke federal-question jurisdiction as a plaintiff (and the former plaintiff to plead his original claim as a compulsory counterclaim, invoking the court’s supplemental jurisdiction. Chapter VI, at 127). If the plaintiff’s claim is federal, the federal court will hear the counterclaim.
- c. Just as federal courts determine cases arising under state law in diversity cases, Chapter V, at 107, so concurrent jurisdiction of federal-question cases allows state courts to gain expertise in federal law. This may keep both sets of courts from becoming overly specialized.
- , 133 S. Ct. 1059 (2013), is substantiality’s latest chapter. Minton sued his former attorneys in state court for malpractice (a state-tort claim) in handling a patent-infringement suit (an exclusively federal claim). Losing at trial, Minton argued that the federal courts had exclusive jurisdiction over his malpractice action because it arose from a patent. The state’s highest court agreed. The Supreme Court unanimously disagreed and offered a four-part test. There is federal-question jurisdiction over a state-law claim containing a well-pleaded, outcome-determinative federal issue that is “(1) necessarily raised, (2) actually disputed, (3) substantial, and (4) capable of resolution in federal court without disrupting the federal-state balance approved by Congress.” The first two elements are reasonably clear.
- 1. “Protective jurisdiction” describes two theories to justify vesting authority in the federal courts under Article III’s “arising under” provision to hear cases involving solely issues of state law. Both theories threaten the assumption of parity of federal and state courts to decide questions of federal law.
- Federal-question jurisdiction (sometimes called arising-under jurisdiction) is a staple of the federal court docket. Unlike diversity jurisdiction, Chapter V, § I, at 108, there is no controversy about whether the federal courts should have federal-question jurisdiction; everyone seems to agree that determining cases that arise under federal law is an appropriate task for the federal judiciary. Although there are many specialized federal statutes granting jurisdiction for narrow categories of cases, the focus here is on the general federal-question jurisdiction statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1331, which grants jurisdiction over cases arising under any federal law and has no amount-in-controversy requirement.
- Open Chapter
Appendix A. Answers to Review Questions 54 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 1. There is no federal subject-matter jurisdiction over Claim 1. Federal courts have limited subject-matter jurisdiction. The two principal types of cases that federal courts can hear are diversity and federal question cases.
- procedure, by which the federal court stays pending litigation in state court, applies without question in abstention, in which the federal court stays the action pending return from state court. abstention, though the Supreme Court upheld a stay of federal proceedings, it is not clear that there is any issue left for the federal court to litigate. abstention, the statement in Question 6 clearly is not true. The federal court dismisses the case, and the parties go to the state system for ultimate adjudication.
- The Court has recognized two valid excuses, though their theoretical bases are unclear. First, if the state court has limited subject matter jurisdiction and cannot hear the claim, then notwithstanding the claim’s federal nature, the state court need not enforce the federal claim. Second, if the state court would dismiss under the doctrine of forum non conveniens, it need not entertain the federal claim.
- Although the operative language of the statutory and constitutional provisions is identical, Supreme Court has interpreted the statutory language more narrowly. The relatively narrow construction of the statute avoids inundation of the federal courts with federal-question cases.
- To invoke federal-question jurisdiction under § 1331, the case must arise under federal law. The claim here appears in P’s well pleaded complaint—it is not an anticipated defense. The question is whether the federal ingredient in the claim is sufficiently important to invoke federal-question jurisdiction. The Supreme Court has embraced differing tests for this element. One, set forth in , is whether federal law created the cause of action. Here, however, state law created the cause of action, so the case does not invoke federal question under that test. Under , the test is whether the right to relief depends upon the construction of federal law. Arguably, that is so here, because the statute invites courts to look at what behavior constitutes a violation of federal antitrust law.
- Open Chapter
Chapter I. Introduction 98 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 1. Article III, § 2, extends the federal courts’ judicial power to enumerateed types of cases and controversies. Thus, the federal courts may not issue opinions simply giving advice to the other branches of the federal government. The judicial power exists only to decide actual disputes; the courts’ job is to decide cases, not to make general decrees about the propriety of government action.
- 1. Article III applies to the federal courts, including the Supreme Court. Thus, the Article-III standing requirements apply to matters that Court adjudicates, even when they may involve only reviewing state-court decisions involving federal law.
- 2. Congress occasionally sets up schemes in which federal courts would have merely advisory functions, violating the case-or-controversy requirement. ., 333 U.S. 103, 113 (1948) (President could ignore federal courts’ review of administrative rulings concerning airline routes; scheme rejected as forcing federal courts to “render an advisory opinion in its most obnoxious form”).
- , 490 U.S. 605 (1989), held that the Court had authority to review a decision of the Arizona Supreme Court, even though the plaintiffs would have lacked the standing to sue in federal court under Article III. The Arizona judgment was against the defendants, who invoked the Supreme Court’s appellate jurisdiction. The negative state court decision harmed the defendants sufficiently to constitute an Article-III injury that allowed a federal court to determine the case.
- a. Commentators have criticized this limitation as potentially shielding government action that blatantly violates constitutional rights of a large number of people. In application, however, the Supreme Court seems to be saying only that this limitation closes federal courts to the general complaint of a citizen who sues to ensure that the federal government acts in compliance with the law. The Court has made it clear that one who meets the constitutional requirements for standing will not lack standing simply because she shares that harm with many others.
- Open Chapter
Chapter V. Partnership Allocations: § 704(b) Part 2 79 results (showing 5 best matches)
- b. The federal district court draws its jury from the entire federal district Congress has defined, which may include numerous counties. A state court draws its jury from a smaller geographic area, usually a single county. The federal jury might harbor less local bias than a group drawn from a more localized area.
- The inferior federal courts can hear such disputes only if Congress acts to grant jurisdiction over them. Thus, for the federal courts to exercise jurisdiction over a dispute, there must be both (a) a constitutional grant of the judicial power and (b) a statutory grant of the subject-matter jurisdiction over that kind of dispute. Section B,
- a. As a matter of history, the original Judiciary Act granted jurisdiction to federal courts over cases “at common law or in equity.” Because ecclesiastical courts historically heard domestic relations cases, which were neither law nor equity cases, the statutory grant of federal jurisdiction did not include such disputes. The fact that more recent jurisdictional statutes do not use the phrase “at common law or in equity” is irrelevant. Any change to require federal courts to hear domestic-relations cases will have to come from Congress.
- 4. Most of the constitutional bases of judicial power are not self-executing. The fact that a type of case appears in Article III, § 2, cl. 1, does not mean that federal courts automatically can entertain such cases. Note that the Constitution actually jurisdiction only in one court: the Supreme Court. There was uncertainty about whether Congress would create any inferior federal courts ( Art. III, § 1), so it would have made little sense for the Constitution to vest then-non-existent courts with jurisdiction.
- Diversity (more cumbersomely known as diversity-of-citizenship) and alienage cases are two more types of disputes that federal courts may hear. They have been part of congressional grants of jurisdiction since the Judiciary Act of 1789. Diversity cases are between citizens of different states of the United States. Alienage cases are between a citizen of a state of the United States and a citizen or subject of a foreign country. Either type of case must also satisfy a jurisdictional-amount requirement by having an amount in controversy $75,000. Alienage jurisdiction accounts for little of the federal docket and has never been controversial. Diversity jurisdiction accounts for about twenty percent of the federal trial court docket and has always been controversial. The debate about the wisdom of having federal courts decide cases governed by state law, as they do in diversity cases, has never abated.
- Open Chapter
Chapter III. Formation of a Partnership 97 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 3. Originally, the Supreme Court held that the Court of Claims and the Court of Customs and Patent Appeals were legislative courts. The Court overturned that in 1962, concluding that both were Article-III courts. at 72. Subsequently, Congress replaced those courts with the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and a trial forum known as the United States Court of Federal Claims. They are Article-III courts.
- a. Of these, note that only state-court judges are immune from political retaliation by a branch of the federal government. While state-court judges certainly lack Article-III tenure protection, neither Congress nor the executive branch of the federal government may reduce their pay or remove them from office. That is not so with territorial and military courts.
- , courts independent of the political branches of the federal government, whether Article-III courts or state courts (whose judges’ salary and tenure are not subject to federal regulation), must decide such constitutional issues.
- (4) A statute similar to proposal 3, except that in addition the law would create a new federal legislative court finally to adjudicate all such cases in lieu of existing federal or state courts.
- 10. In addition to upholding the local-court ruling, cited three situations in which Congress had properly vested non-Article-III courts with Article-III power: (1) territorial courts, (2) military courts, and (3) state courts (by making some grants of federal-court jurisdiction concurrent). , of course, adds the District of Columbia local courts to that list.
- Open Chapter
Chapter X. Sales and Exchanges of Partnership Interests 87 results (showing 5 best matches)
- 1. If the Amendment applies, the federal court will dismiss an action that began in federal court and remand an action that the defendant removed.
- The Eleventh Amendment, reacting to a case that upheld federal jurisdiction over a debt action against a state, removes federal judicial power over actions by a citizen of a state against another state. The Supreme Court has also interpreted the Amendment to bar cases by a citizen against her own state. The Amendment embodies sovereign immunity and has come to stand for the proposition that certain plaintiffs cannot sue a state in federal court. Despite narrow literal terms, the Supreme Court has interpreted the Amendment broadly. It is clear, for instance, that it applies in cases in which the state is not a named party but is the real party in interest. When it applies, it bars federal suit against a state.
- Plaintiffs may be able to avoid the Amendment, however, by invoking one of three well-established but narrow exceptions. The Amendment and the exceptions raise important questions of federalism—whether a citizen ought to be able to seek justice from a state in a federal court. Many people criticize the principle that a state should not have to answer in federal court when it commits an actionable wrong, particularly when the plaintiff’s claim sounds in federal law.
- 2. Also, because the Amendment speaks only of the federal judicial power, it does not in terms forbid suits sounding in federal law against a state in state court. However, , 527 U.S. 706 (1998), recognized a state constitutional immunity to private actions in state courts based on at least some federal law Congress enacted using its Article-I, §-8, powers.
- 5. For generations, the Supreme Court treated the Amendment’s principle as ensuring that a federal court could never hold a state liable. The Court saw the Eleventh Amendment’s primary goal as protecting state treasuries from liability. ., 513 U.S. 30 (1994) (protection of state treasury from federal judgments is the most “salient” factor in determining when an action is against a state).
- Open Chapter
Summary of Contents 33 results (showing 5 best matches)
- PART ONE: FEDERAL COURTS AND THE POLITICAL BRANCHES OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
- II. Distinction Between Congressional Power Over the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and the Lower Federal Courts
- III. Federal Courts Cannot Issue Advisory Opinions
- III. Congressional Power to Regulate Lower Federal Court Jurisdiction
- PART THREE: FEDERAL COURTS, FEDERALISM, AND THE STATES
- Open Chapter
Table of Cases 86 results (showing 5 best matches)
Table of Contents 82 results (showing 5 best matches)
- PART ONE: FEDERAL COURTS AND POLITICAL BRANCHES OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
- C. State-Courts’ Obligation to Employ Federal Procedures in Adjudicating Federal Claims
- II. Distinction Between Congressional Power Over the Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and of the Lower Federal Courts
- A. Article III Provisions About Establishment of the Supreme Court and Lower Federal Courts
- III. Federal Courts Cannot Issue Advisory Opinions
- Open Chapter
Index 8 results (showing 5 best matches)
- Bivens v. Six Unknown Named Agents of Federal Bureau of Narcotics, 21, 252, 263, 303-307, 331, 332
- D’Oench, Duhme & Co. v. Federal Deposit Ins. Corporation, 295
- Federal Election Com’n v. Akins, 38, 43
- Federal Radio Commission v. General Electric Co., 72
- District of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman, 179, 180
- Open Chapter
- Publication Date: February 10th, 2017
- ISBN: 9781634607704
- Subject: Federal Courts
- Series: Black Letter Outlines
- Type: Outlines
- Description: Black Letter Outlines are designed to help a law student recognize and understand the basic principles and issues of law covered in a law school course. Black Letter Outlines can be used both as a study aid when preparing for classes and as a review of the subject matter when studying for an examination. Each Black Letter Outline is written by experienced law school professors who are recognized national authorities in their subject area.