Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2054645
 


 



Jurisdictional Discrimination and Full Faith and Credit


Ann Woolhandler


University of Virginia School of Law

Michael G. Collins


University of Virginia School of Law

March 1, 2013

Emory Law Journal, Vol. 63, 2013
Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2012-30

Abstract:     
In Hughes v. Fetter (1951), the Supreme Court ruled that state courts are ordinarily required — as a matter of the Full Faith and Credit Clause — to take jurisdiction of claims arising under sister state law, their own wishes notwithstanding. Hughes remains a foundational case for Conflict of Laws and interstate relations. It is said to embody principles that states should maximize each others’ policies, and cannot discriminate against sister state laws. This article argues that Hughes was wrong. The decision is not justified by history or precedent under the Clause, nor by a policy maximization rationale. And its nondiscrimination norm fits poorly with states’ allowable preferences for enforcement of their own law over sister-state law. Rather, states should be under a much more limited duty, grounded in a litigant’s substantive entitlement to redress, rather than a duty not to discriminate against the law of sister states. Arguments for extension of a rule of nondiscrimination against the law of other sovereigns in the choice of law, public policy, and jurisdiction-stripping settings should therefore not rely on the doubtful result in Hughes.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 50

Keywords: federalism, courts, Conflict of Laws, Jurisdiction, Constitutional Law, Full Faith, Credit

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Date posted: May 8, 2012 ; Last revised: March 25, 2013

Suggested Citation

Woolhandler, Ann and Collins, Michael G., Jurisdictional Discrimination and Full Faith and Credit (March 1, 2013). Emory Law Journal, Vol. 63, 2013; Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2012-30. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2054645 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2054645

Contact Information

Ann Woolhandler (Contact Author)
University of Virginia School of Law ( email )
580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
Michael G. Collins
University of Virginia School of Law ( email )
580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
434-243-2385 (Phone)

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