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Flashcards in Civil Procedure Deck (47):

Personal Jurisdiction MNEMONIC

"My Parents Frequently Read Science Fiction Children's Stories Out-Loud"



Personal jurisdiction

the court must have proper jurisdiction over the parties to an action.


Traditional basis for Personal Jurisdiction

Exists where the defendant:
a. consents to jurisdiction in the forum state
b. is domiciled in the forum state.
c. Is present in the forums state when served with process


Minimum Contacts

Requires a showing of purposeful availment and foreseeability.


Long Arm Statutes

mechanism that gives a state power to reach beyond its own borders and assert jurisdiction over a nonresident.


Specific Jurisdiction

The claim must be related tot he defendant's contacts with the forum.


General Jurisdiction

Where there is no specific jurisdiction, the court will look to see if the defendant has systematic and continuous activity in the forum state such that the defendant is essentially at home in the forum.


Subject Matter Jurisdiction

the court must have proper jurisdiction over the subject matter of an action.


Federal Subject Matter Jurisdiction

A federal court has subject matter jurisdiction over an action arising out of Federal law or Diversity of Citizenship.


Diversity of Citizenship

Complete Diversity between the parties and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000


Corporation's Citizenship

A corporation is a citizen of
a. the state where the business is incorporated; and the one state where the corporation as it principal place of business.


Supplemental Jurisdiction

applies to provide subject matter jurisdiction when an additional claim does not itself invoke federal subject matter jurisdiction, but the additional claims rises out of the same transaction or occurence with a claim that does properly invoke federal subject matter jurisdiction.


Removal jurisdiction

Allows the defendant to have a case originally filed in state court removed to federal court where the case could have properly been brought in either state or federal court.



When a defendant attempts to remove a case to federal court and the removal is improper, the federal court can remand the case back to the state court.



Venue in civil actions in the federal courts is proper in:
1. a judicial district where any defendant resides, if all defendants reside in the same state;
2. a judicial district in which a substantial part of the events or omissions giving rise to the claim occurred, or a substantial part of property that is subject of the action is situated; or
3. if there is no district anywhere in the United States that satisfies 1. or 2., a judicial district which any defendant is subject to personal jurisdiction with respect to such action.


Forum Non Conveniens (Federal)

A court may dismiss or stay a case if there is a far more appropriate forum elsewhere, such as another state or county.


Forum Non Conveniens (State)

the court will determine if another forum is more suitable under forum non conveniens by looking at the interests of justice, including: public and private factors.


Constitutional Limitations to Personal Jurisdiction

To be constitutional there must be sufficient contacts with the forum state so as to not offend the traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.


Purposeful Availment (PJ)

the court must find that defendant purposefully availed herself of the privilege of conducting activities in the forum state, thus invoking the benefits and protections of its laws.


Foreseeability (PJ)

The defendant must know or reasonably anticipated that her activities in the forum render it foreseeable that she may be haled into court there.


Relatedness (PJ)

the claim must arise from the defendant's contacts with the forum. This requires either specific jurisdiction or general jurisdiction.


Fairness (PJ)

the court in determining whether exercising personal jurisdiction over defendant is fair will look at the convenience to the defendant, the state's interest, and other factors.


Convenience (PJ)

A forum is constitutionally acceptable unless it is so gravely difficult and inconvenient that the defendant is put at a severe disadvantage.


State's Interests (PJ)

The forum state may have a legitimate interest in providing redress for its residents.


Other Factors (PJ)

Other factors include the plaintiff's interest, the judicial system's interest and the shared interests of the states.


Res Judicata (Claim Preclusion)

for claim preclusion to apply it must be shown that:
1. the earlier judgment is valid, final and on the merits;
2. the cases are brought by the same claimant against the same defendant;
3. the same cause of action or claim is involved in the later lawsuit; and
4. the cause of action was actually litigated or could have been litigated.


Collateral Estoppel (Issue Claim Preclusion)

1. Case 1 ended in a valid, final judgment on the merits.
2. the same issue was actually litigated and determined in case 1.
3. the issue was essential to the judgment in Case 1. without this issue the judgment in case 1 would have been different.
4. Issue preclusion is being asserted against one who was a party to Case 1 or who was represented by a party



Claims can be aggregated to meet the amount in controversy if there is one plaintiff and one defendant, or if there are joint tortfeasor defendants.


Residence of Individuals for Venue Purposes

Natural Persons reside at their domicile


Residence of Business Entities for Venue Purposes

Resides in any judicial district which it is subject to the court's personal jurisdiction with respect to the civil action in question.


Erie Doctrine

A federal court sitting in diversity must apply state substantive law and federal procedural law.


Notice pleading

Federal Courts use notice pleading, the goal of which is to provide the opposing party with reasonable notice of the nature and scope of the claims being asserted.


Relation Back Doctrine

1. Amended Claims relate back if they concern the same conduct, transaction, or occurrence as the original pleading.
2. Amended Defendant's relate back if
a. they concern the same conduct, transaction, or occurrence as the original pleading.
b. the new party knew of the original action within 120 days of its filing; and
c. the new party also knew that, but for a mistake, she would have been named as a defendant in the original complaint.



a mechanism a defending party can use to add a third party defendant in order to seek indemnity, subrogation or contribution.


Necessary Party

A party is a necessary party if the court cannot provide complete relief without the necessary party or the absent party's interest will be harmed if he is not joined or the absent arty is subject to multiple inconsistent obligations.


Indispensable Party

A party is indispensable if complete relief cannot be provided in his absence yet he is unable to be joined to the case for some reason. When a party is indispensable the case must be dismissed.



applies when a nonparty claims an interest in the property or transaction that is the subject of the pending lawsuit and disposition in his absence will impair his rights.



An Offensive claim against an opposing party.


Compulsory Counterclaim

arise from the same transaction or occurrence as the plaintiff's claim and must be raised in the pending case or the claim is deemed waived.


Permissive counterclaims

do not arise from the same transaction or occurrence and may be raised in the pending case or in a separate case.


Cross Claim

an offensive claim against a co-party and must arise from the same transaction or occurrence. Cross Claims are never compulsory.


Rule 11

Requires all attorneys or a party representing himself to sign all pleadings, written motions and papers certifying that the paper is proper, the legal contentions are warranted by law, and factual contentions with evidentiary support.


Rule 12

Requires a defendant to respond by either a motion or by an answer within 21 days after service of process.


Rule 12(b) Defenses

1. Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction
2. Lack of Personal Jurisdiction
3. Improper venue
4. Insufficient process
5. insufficient service of process
6. Failure to state a claim
7. Failure to join an indispensable party


Requirements of Class Actions

1. Numerosity
2. Commonality
3. Typicality
4. Adequacy of representation and
5. Type of Class


Motion for Summary Judgment

will be ordered where the moving party can establish no genuine issue of material fact and that she is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.


Judgment as a matter of law

occurs when one party files a motion after the other side has been heard at trial, contending that reasonable people could not disagree on the results.