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Civil Procedure - Justin Hoffman Civil Procedure Outline...

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Justin Hoffman – Civil Procedure Outline – Prof. Cavanagh I Justiciability - In order for a court to hear a case, the case must be justiciable and thus capable of resolution by a court. A court will not hear: 1. Political questions (Cudahy) 2. Wagers 3. Moot questions where the matter has been decided (DeFunnis v. Odegard) 4. “Friendly” litigation where one party is financing both sides. There is no incentive in the last two examples for either side. 5. Courts will not give advisory opinions. Cases must be heard in context; courts are there to resolve real issues between real litigants. Two Requirements for Standing 6. A stake in the litigation. You have to be the victim in the wrongdoing. 7. Given the stake in the litigation, are you the best person to sue? This is not rooted in the constitution but in prudential concerns. Employees, shareholders and creditors of a company put out of business by Microsoft cannot sue, but the company itself can. B) Jurisdiction, Generally Jurisdiction is of two types. A court must have both in order to proceed in an action. C) Subject Matter Jurisdiction – Can the court hear this kind of case? No divorce, or wills, no dispute over your neighbors, dogbites. D) Personal Jurisdiction - Jurisdiction over persons or things before the court – Does the court have the power to affect the legal rights of the particular individuals or things before the court? 1. Subject matter jurisdiction i. From Article III of the Constitution and Congressional statute. ii. Federal courts are courts of limited subject matter jurisdiction. You must have statutory jurisdiction to be in Federal court. State courts are courts of general jurisdiction. iii. Cannot be conferred by consent. Objections to subject matter jurisdiction can be raised at any time, even on appeal. If the jurisdiction is void, the decision has no effect. iv. The plaintiff has the responsibility to show the subject matter jurisdiction. v. The court can raise the issue of SJM on its own. 2. Personal jurisdiction i. A matter of statute and common law. ii. May be conferred by consent. Consent may be conferred in advance, for example by contract. iii. If the issue of personal jurisdiction is not raised immediately, it is waived.
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II Elements of Federal Court Subject Matter Jurisdiction A) Diversity- Defined in 28 U.S.C. §1332. 1. The amount in controversy must exceed $75,000. 2. All controversies in which diversity is the basis of jurisdiction must have complete diversity, meaning between the plaintiff(s) and defendant(s). (Strawbridge v. Curtis) 3. Diversity of the parties is determined by their domicile at the time of filing of the lawsuit . 4. Domicile is not residence . You can have many residences but only one domicile. Determined from your intent to make the state your home or your voter registration, car registration, IRS filing address, etc. You keep your old domicile until you acquire a new one.
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