Outline - Conflict of Laws

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Personal Jurisdiction a. General and Specific Jurisdiction i. Pennoyer v. Neff (U.S. 1878) 1. Did Oregon have jurisdiction over land? Neff? 2. Territoriality a. Oregon has jurisdiction over land within its territory b. Presence equals power ii. International Shoe v. Washington (U.S. 1940) 1. Did Washington have jurisdiction over International Shoe? 2. Jurisdiction exists when there are minimum contacts to establish fair play and substantial justice iii. Helicopteros Nacionales v. Hall (U.S. 1983) 1. Did Texas have jurisdiction over Helicos? 2. Supreme Court finds no jurisdiction iv. General Jurisdiction 1. The number of contacts defendant has with the forum give rise to jurisdiction in any suit 2. Requires systematic and continuous contacts v. Specific Jurisdiction 1. Jurisdiction is based on contacts related to or arising from the subject of the suit b. Transient Jurisdiction i. Asahi Metal v. Superior Court of California (U.S. 1987) 1. Did California have jurisdiction over Asahi? 2. Supreme Court finds that Asahi lacks minimum contacts to establish jurisdiction 3. Asahi may have foreseen that their product may end up in CA, but they did not purposefully avail themselves of the benefits of CA 4. CA jurisdiction offends traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice ii. Burnham v. Superior Court of California (U.S. 1990) 1. Did California have jurisdiction over Burnham? 2. Supreme Court says a state has power over those within its territory 3. Presence equals power iii. World-Wide Volkswagen v. Woodson (U.S. 1980) 1. Did Oklahoma have jurisdiction over WWV? 2. Supreme Court says no jurisdiction because no minimum contacts 3. WWV did not purposefully avail themselves of OK Choice of Laws

a. The Territorial Approach i. Torts 1. Alabama Great Southern Railroad v. Carroll (Ala. 1892) a. Does the Court apply law of Mississippi or Alabama? b. Injury occurred in MS, therefore apply MS law st 2. 1 Restatement Approach a. The place of the wrong is the state where the last event necessary to make an actor liable takes place. b. Except: i. Poison where it takes effect ii. Deleterious Substance where it takes effect iii. Harm to Land or Chattels where the force takes effect iv. Fraud where loss is sustained v. Defamation where the statement was made c. Law of the place of the wrong is applied ii. Contracts 1. 1st Restatement Approach a. The place of contracting is the place in which, under the general law of Contracts, the principal event necessary to make a contract occurs b. When a contract becomes effective on delivery, the place of contracting is where the delivery is made c. When a contract document is sent by common carrier, the place of contracting is where the document is posted d. When a document is delivered through an agent, the place of contracting is where the agent delivers it e. In a unilateral contract, the place of contracting is where the event takes place which makes the promise binding f. In a bilateral contract, the place of contracting is where the second promise is made in consideration of the first promise g. When an offer is made in one state and the acceptance is sent from another state the place of contracting is: i. If sent by an agent, the state where the agent delivers it ii. If sent by any other means, the state from which the acceptance is sent h. Law of the place of contracting determines: i. Capacity to make the contract

ii. The necessary form in which the promise must be made iii. The mutual assent required to make a promise binding iv. Any other requirements for making a promise binding v. Circumstances which make a promise void vi. The nature of the duty for the performance of which a party becomes bound vii. When and where the promise is to be performed viii. The absolute or conditional character of the promise i. The place of performance is the state where the promise is to be performed j. Law of the place of performance governs: i. The manner of performance ii. Time and place of performance iii. Who shall perform iv. The sufficiency of performance v. Excuse for non-performance 2. Poole v. Perkins (Va. 1919) a. Promissory note payable in VA b. Note signed and delivered in TN c. TN allows plea of coverture d. If TN law applies, note is void e. If VA law applies, note is valid f. Court finds that contract is governed by the place of performance: VA 3. Linn v. Employers Reinsurance Corp. (Pa. 1958) a. Contract for payment of insurance commissions, accepted by phone b. If NY law applies, contract is void c. If PA law applies, contract is valid d. Court finds that acceptance takes place where the words are spoken: remanded to determine that iii. Marriage 1. 1st Restatement Approach a. Marriage is valid everywhere if the law of the state where contract of marriage takes place is complied with

b. Marriage is invalid everywhere if and requirement of the law of the state where the contract of marriage takes place is not complied with c. If one party, forbidden from remarriage by one state, remarries in another state, the marriage is valid everywhere d. Marriage which is against the law of the state of domicile will be invalid, even if the law of the state of celebration is complied with, when: i. Polygamous marriage ii. Incestuous marriage iii. Interracial marriage iv. Marriage of a domiciliary which statute makes void e. Marriage celebrated in one state and contrary to policy in another state shall not be recognized by the latter state f. Law of the state of celebration governs the nullity of a marriage g. Status of legitimacy is governed by the law of the domicile of the parent whose relationship is questioned h. Legitimate kinship of a child to either parent from the time of birth is governed by the law of the domicile of that parent at that time 2. In re Mays Estate (N.Y. 1953) a. Marriage celebrated and valid in Rhode Island b. Would have been invalid if celebrated in NY c. Court finds marriage valid d. Declines to extend statute preventing such marriage to invalidate foreign marriages 3. Lanham v. Lanham (Wis. 1908) a. Marriage celebrated in Michigan b. One party prohibited from remarrying by Wisconsin c. Court finds marriage invalid iv. Real Property 1. 1st Restatement Approach a. Property rights in a tangible thing are governed by the laws of the state where the thing is when the rights are created b. Capacity to convey land is governed by the law where the land is c. Formalities of conveyance are determined by the place where the land is

d. Validity of conveyance is determined by the place where the land is e. Law of the place where land is determines its devolution upon intestate death of the owner 2. Burr v. Beckler (Ill. 1914) a. Deed for property in Illinois conveyed from defendant to plaintiff, in exchange for promissory note b. Deed and note written and conveyed in Florida, which has coverture law c. Court finds that although the deed regarded property in IL, the transfer of the deed was performance of a contract made in FL and therefore, because of coverture, the contract was invalid per FL law 3. Thomson v. Kyle (Fla. 1897) a. Note and mortgage executed by defendant/appellant, a married woman, for her husbands debt b. Note and mortgage executed in Alabama, which does not allow the debt obligation of a married woman for her husbands debt c. Mortgage for property in FL d. FL allows a married woman to execute a mortgage as security for her husbands debt e. Court finds that though she may not be obligated by the promissory note, the mortgage is valid because it refers to real property in FL and therefore, mortgages and other action referring to the property shall be governed by the laws of FL v. Wrinkles in the Theory 1. Characterization a. Haumschild v. Continental Casualty Co. (Wis. 1959) i. Accident in California, husband and wife both injured ii. CA law prevents husband and wife from suing one another iii. WI law allows husband and wife to sue each other iv. WI COLA is the 1st restatement: law of the state where the tort occurred v. Court characterizes the suit as not a tort but family law, and therefore the law of the domicile of the

parties governs capacity to bring suit, in this case WI 2. Substance and Procedure a. 1st Restatement Approach i. Court of the forum determines whether a question is substance or procedure ii. Forum determines procedure iii. Forum determines who may and must sue or be sued b. Sampson v. Channell (1st Cir. 1940) i. Accident in Maine ii. Forum is Federal Court in Massachusetts, due to diversity jurisdiction iii. Per Erie v. Tompkins: Federal court, sitting in diversity apply law of state where court resides iv. ME requires showing of due care on part of plaintiff v. MA puts burden of proof of contributory negligence on defendant vi. Trial Court finds that burden of proof is substantive and therefore applies ME law as place of the wrong vii. 1st Circuit reverses saying that a MA court would have placed burden on defendant as burden of proof in MA is procedure c. OLeary v. Illinois Terminal Railroad (Mo. 1957) i. Accident in Illinois ii. MO has burden on defendant to show contributory negligence iii. IL has burden on plaintiff to show no contributory negligence iv. Forum looks to own laws to determine whether substantive or procedure v. 1st Restatement: Is procedure inextricably intertwined with cause of action? If yes, then the law of the place of the wrong will guide the substantive v. procedure question of the forum vi. Court finds that duty of care requirement must be satisfied before cause of action may be brought, therefore MO courts will apply IL burden of proof d. Grant v. McAuliffe (Cal. 1953) i. Accident in Arizona

ii. CA allows suits to be brought against a decedents estate for negligence iii. AZ does not allow suits against decedents estate for negligence iv. Court determines that capacity for decedent to be sued is procedure; AZ incapacity of deced