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Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, they can hear cases having to do with federal questions or diversity cases
Federal Question (Article III)
- Federal courts can hear cases arising under a federal question (Constitution, treaties, acts of Congress); needs a well-pleaded complaint that arises under federal law that provides a private remedy and private cause of action
- - 1331 for District Courts
Federal Question (Arises Under Test)
- 1. Plaintiff is part of the class to be protected by statute
- 2. Congress intended to provide a private right of action (for citizen to collect $ on) ie., Civil Rights, Title 9
- 3. Federal cause of action furthers legislative scheme
- 4. Cause of action is not traditionally a matter of state law
Diversity – 1332
- For a federal court to exercise SMJ there must be complete diversity (no P from the same state as any D) AND the amount in controversy, as to each D, must exceed $75,000.
- - Diversity is only required to exist when the action is filed
Diversity (Amount in Controversy)
The P’s amount in controversy must exceed $75K; defendant can show to substantial certainty that P cannot recover this amount (Legal Certainty test)
Amount in Controversy (Aggregation of Claims)
- Single plaintiff can aggregate claims but multiple plaintiffs cannot aggregate claims
- - Single plaintiff must have at least one defendant over 75K if multiple defendants
Amount in Controversy: (Injunction Value)
An injunction may be valued at the benefit to the P or the cost to the D
Diversity (Complete Diversity)
No plaintiff from the same state as a defendant; based on domicile (if only given residence mention this, and assume domicile)
- Individuals are citizens of their state of domicile (their permanent residence).
- - Corporations are citizens of their state of incorporation and their principal places of business (nerve test).
- - Permanent resident aliens are citizens of their state of domicile.
- - Non-permanent resident aliens may be sued in any judicial district.
- - Aliens are citizens of the “51st state.”
Supplemental Jurisdiction - 1367
If a plaintiff brings a proper federal claim or diversity claim so that the federal court has original jurisdiction, the court may hear all claims that are a part of the same case or controversy.
Supplemental (3rd Party Claim) – 1367 (a)
Supplemental jurisdiction is afforded to any 3rd party claim, which arises from the same nucleus of operative facts so as to form part of the same case or controversy, even if the requirements for federal question or diversity are not met.
Supplemental (Limits Jurisdiction over 3rd Party Claim) – 1367 (b)
Plaintiffs do not get the benefit of supplemental jurisdiction over claims against parties joined under Rules 14, 19, 20, or 24. in diversity actions
Supplemental (Declining Jurisdiction) - 1367(C)
- The court can decline to use supplemental jurisdiction if:
- 1. The claim raises a novel or complex issue of State law
- 2. The state claim substantially predominates over claims federal court has the original j/ over
- 3. The district court has dismissed all other claims it has original jurisdiction
- 4. There are other compelling reasons in exceptional circumstances
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