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This Ain’t the Texas Two Step Folks: Disharmony, Confusion, and the Unfair Nature of Personal Jurisdiction Analysis in the Fifth Circuit

49 Pages Posted: 20 Feb 2010  

Angela Laughlin

Texas Tech University - School of Law

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

This article discusses how lack of uniformity among courts in the application of the “stream of commerce” test removes clarity and predictability from the law and creates problems for commerce. Part I of this article introduces the problems associated with conflicting standards. Part II, after reviewing the foundations of personal jurisdiction, explores the deep divide in federal and state courts over proper application of the minimum contacts test, as well as the arguments in favor of each test. As a case study, this article utilizes the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals as a model of how personal jurisdiction analysis is playing out in the federal circuit courts. Part III of the article outlines the benefits of an approach to personal jurisdiction that focuses on the volume, value, and hazardous character of products placed into interstate commerce. The article also recommends that the Fifth Circuit reconsider the fairness of its current jurisprudence. Part IV concludes by restating the need for the Supreme Court to answer this question and to once and for all align the courts on the proper “minimum contacts test.”

Keywords: Stream of Commerce Test, Federal Jurisdiction, Fifth Circuit, Minimum Contacts Test

JEL Classification: K40

Suggested Citation

Laughlin, Angela, This Ain’t the Texas Two Step Folks: Disharmony, Confusion, and the Unfair Nature of Personal Jurisdiction Analysis in the Fifth Circuit (2009). Capital University Law Review, Vol. 27, No. 3, pp. 681-728, 2009; Texas Tech Law School Research Paper No. 2010-02. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1556372

Angela Laughlin (Contact Author)

Texas Tech University - School of Law ( email )

1802 Hartford
Lubbock, TX 79409
United States
8067423990 (Phone)

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