State Law

Is the Treaty Supremacy Rule Really Dead?

In Medellín v. Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court held that a non-self-executing treaty does not supersede conflicting state law, or perhaps that courts cannot enforce non-self-executing treaties to override conflicting state laws. After Medellín, one would have expected state courts in treaty supremacy cases to begin their analyses by determining whether a treaty is self-executing….

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The Extraterritorial Application of State Wage and Hour Laws

Many U.S. states have enacted wage and hour laws. These laws generally set a minimum wage and require employers to pay overtime. When a company headquartered in one state hires an employee to perform work in a foreign country, however, it is not always clear which jurisdiction’s laws will apply. Is the payment of wages…

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Colorado Court Holds That Forum Non Conveniens Dismissal Is Not Preclusive

When a court in the United States grants a motion to dismiss for forum non conveniens, finding that a plaintiff’s claims should be litigated abroad, may the plaintiff instead choose to refile its claims in another U.S. jurisdiction? The answer will often be yes because the forum non conveniens dismissal does not have issue preclusive…

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When Should Federal Common Law Govern Transnational Litigation?

The conventional wisdom is that transnational litigation “can trigger foreign relations concerns.” Because the federal government has primary responsibility for the United States’ relations with other nations, the question naturally arises whether federal law should govern such litigation even when neither a federal statute, nor the U.S. Constitution, nor a treaty is applicable. Currently, as…

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A Primer on State Law in Transnational Litigation

[Editors: This post is one in a series of Primers on topics in transnational litigation. Primers on each of the topics listed in the Topics menu are planned, and some already appear on the relevant topic pages.] The procedural and substantive rules that U.S. courts apply in transnational litigation come from many sources, including the…

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Substituted Service and the Hague Service Convention

Can state law be used to avoid a federal treaty, even though the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution makes treaties supreme over state law? The somewhat surprising answer is yes—at least when it comes to the Hague Service Convention and state rules on substituted service. The Hague Service Convention governs transnational service of process…

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State Doctrines of Forum Non Conveniens: Beyond Gulf Oil

State courts have their own doctrines for addressing transnational litigation, including their own doctrines of forum non conveniens (FNC). While a majority of states today apply a version of FNC like that of the federal courts, we found that 17 states—fully one third—depart from the Gulf Oil framework in one or more ways.

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What Should Happen Next in Cassirer?

Most of the procedural questions that arise in domestic litigation have a counterpart in transnational litigation. In Cassirer v. Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation, the Supreme Court confronted the transnational counterpart to Klaxon v. Stentor Electric Manufacturing Co., a much-debated choice-of-law case decided in 1941. As Justice Kagan noted in her opinion for a unanimous Court, “[a]lthough…

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Cassirer and FSIA Choice of Law

Today the Supreme Court unanimously resolved an important case about choice of law under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA). Cassirer v. Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation is a lawsuit about the ownership of a Camille Pissarro painting, surrendered by Lilly Cassirer to the Nazis and now held by a foundation created and controlled by the Government…

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Supreme Court decides Cassirer v. Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation

The Supreme Court today unanimously held in Cassirer v. Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection Foundation that state choice-of-law rules apply in cases brought against foreign sovereigns alleging non-federal claims.

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Ingrid (Wuerth) Brunk

Vanderbilt Law School
ingrid.wuerth@vanderbilt.eduEmail

William Dodge

UC Davis School of Law
wsdodge@ucdavis.eduEmail

Maggie Gardner

Cornell Law School
mgardner@cornell.eduEmail

John Coyle

University of North Carolina School of Law
jfcoyle@email.unc.eduEmail

Benjamin Hayward

Department of Business Law and Taxation, Monash Business School
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Rajat Lal

Faculty of Law, Monash University
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David Landau

Florida State University College of Law
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Matt Hornung

Cornell Law School
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Katie Burghardt Kramer

DGW Kramer LLP
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Tanya Monestier

University at Buffalo School of Law
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Jeanne Huang

University of Sydney Law School
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Mark Weidemaier

University of North Carolina School of Law
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Mitu Gulati

University of Virginia
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Pamela K. Bookman

Fordham University School of Law
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