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Jurisdiction: an overview One of the most fundamental questions of law is whether a given court has jurisdiction to preside over a given case. A jurisdictional.

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Presentation on theme: "Jurisdiction: an overview One of the most fundamental questions of law is whether a given court has jurisdiction to preside over a given case. A jurisdictional."— Presentation transcript:

1 Jurisdiction: an overview One of the most fundamental questions of law is whether a given court has jurisdiction to preside over a given case. A jurisdictional question may be broken down into three components: 1)jurisdiction over the person (in personam) 2)jurisdiction over the subject matter or res 3)jurisdiction to render the particular judgment sought. The term jurisdiction is really synonymous with the word "power".

2 Jurisdiction: an overview 1)Any court possesses jurisdiction over matters only to the extent granted to it by the Constitution, or legislation of the sovereignty on behalf of which it functions. The question of whether a given court has the power to determine a jurisdictional question is included in this subject header. Such a legal question is referred to as "jurisdiction to determine jurisdiction."

3 Jurisdiction: an overview Subject matter jurisdiction is the court's authority to decide the issue in controversy such as a contracts issue, or a civil rights issue. State courts have general jurisdiction, meaning that they can hear any controversy except those prohibited by state law (some states, for example, deny subject matter jurisdiction for a case that does not involve state citizens and did not take place in the state) and those allocated to federal courts of exclusive jurisdiction such as bankruptcy issues (see 28 U.S.C.A. § 1334). 28 U.S.C.A. § 1334

4 Jurisdiction: an overview Federal courts have limited jurisdiction in that they can only hear cases that fall both within the scope defined by the Constitution in Article III Section 2 and Congressional statutes (See 28 U.S.C.A. §1251, §1253, §1331, §1332).Article III Section 2§1251§1253§1331§1332 Territorial jurisdiction is the court's power to bind the parties to the action. This law determines the scope of federal and state court power. State court territorial jurisdiction is determined by the Due Process Clause of the Constitution's Fourteenth Amendment and the federal court territorial jurisdiction is determined by the Due Process Clause of the Constitution's Fifth Amendment. Fourteenth AmendmentFifth Amendment

5 Jurisdiction: an overview Section 2. The judicial power shall extend to all cases, in law and equity, arising under this Constitution, the laws of the United States, and treaties made, or which shall be made, under their authority;--to all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls;--to all cases of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction;--to controversies to which the United States shall be a party;--to controversies between two or more states;--between a state and citizens of another state;--between citizens of different states;--between citizens of the same state claiming lands under grants of different states, and between a state, or the citizens thereof, and foreign states, citizens or subjects.between a state and citizens of another state

6 Jurisdiction: an overview In all cases affecting ambassadors, other public ministers and consuls, and those in which a state shall be party, the Supreme Court shall have original jurisdiction. In all the other cases before mentioned, the Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction, both as to law and fact, with such exceptions, and under such regulations as the Congress shall make. The trial of all crimes, except in cases of impeachment, shall be by jury; and such trial shall be held in the state where the said crimes shall have been committed; but when not committed within any state, the trial shall be at such place or places as the Congress may by law have directed.

7 Jurisdiction: an overview Section 3. Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court. The Congress shall have power to declare the punishment of treason, but no attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture except during the life of the person attainted.

8 Jurisdiction: an overview Sec Original jurisdiction (a) The Supreme Court shall have original and exclusive jurisdiction of all controversies between two or more States. (b) The Supreme Court shall have original but not exclusive jurisdiction of:

9 Jurisdiction: an overview (1) All actions or proceedings to which ambassadors, other public ministers, consuls, or vice consuls of foreign states are parties; (2) All controversies between the United States and a State; (3) All actions or proceedings by a State against the citizens of another State or against aliens

10 Jurisdiction: an overview Jurisdiction of Federal Courts Before a federal court can hear a case, or "exercise its jurisdiction," certain conditions must be met. First, under the Constitution, federal courts exercise only "judicial powers. That means that federal judges may interpret the law only through the resolution of actual legal disputes, referred to in Article III of the Constitution as "cases or controversies." A court cannot attempt to correct a problem on its own initiative or to answer a hypothetical legal question.

11 Jurisdiction: an overview Second, assuming that there is an actual case or controversy, the plaintiff in a federal lawsuit must have legal "standing" to ask the court for a decision. That means the plaintiff must have been aggrieved or legally harmed in some way by the defendant. Third, the case must present a category of dispute that the law in question was designed to address, and it must be a complaint that the court has the power to remedy. In other words, the court must be authorized, under the Constitution or a federal law, to hear the case and grant appropriate relief to the plaintiff.

12 Jurisdiction: an overview Finally, the case cannot be "moot," that is, it must present an ongoing problem for the court to resolve. The federal courts, thus, are courts of "limited" jurisdiction because they may only decide certain types of cases, as provided by Congress or as identified in the Constitution. Although the details of the complex web of federal jurisdiction that Congress has given the federal courts is beyond the scope of this article, it is important to understand that there are two main sources of the cases coming before the federal courts: "federal question" jurisdiction and "diversity" jurisdiction.

13 Jurisdiction: an overview In general, federal courts may decide cases that involve the United States government, the United States Constitution or federal law, or controversies between states, or between the United States and foreign governments. A case that raises such a "federal question" may be filed in federal court. A case also may be filed in federal court based on the "diversity of citizenship" of the litigants, such as between citizens of different states, or between United States citizens and those of another country.

14 Jurisdiction: an overview To ensure fairness to the out-of-state litigant, the Constitution provides that such cases may be heard in a federal court. An important limit to diversity jurisdiction is that only cases involving more than $75,000 in potential damages may be filed in a federal court. Claims below that amount may only be pursued in state court. Moreover, any diversity jurisdiction case regardless of the amount of money may be brought in a state court rather than a federal court. Federal courts also have jurisdiction over all bankruptcy matters, which Congress has determined should be addressed in federal courts rather than the state courts.

15 Jurisdiction: an overview Through the bankruptcy process, individuals or businesses that can no longer pay their creditors may either seek a court- supervised liquidation of their assets, or they may reorganize their financial affairs and work out a plan to pay off their debts. Although federal courts are located in every state, they are not the only forum available to potential litigants. In fact, the great majority of legal disputes in American courts are addressed in the separate state court systems. The above article is an excerpt from Understanding the Federal Courts. The complete article can be found at:

16 Gully v. First National Bank 1.Derecho o inmunidad creada por las leyes o la Constitución de EU es un elemento esencial en la causa de acción. 2.Exige una interpretación de la ley federal o de la Constitución para poder conceder un remedio. 3.Caso Controversia 4.Las alegación de jurisdicción surgen de la demanda.

17 United Mine Workers v. Gibbs 1.La reclamación federal deber ser sustancialmente suficiente como para otorgar jurisdicción sobre la materia a la corte. 2.Los reclamos estatales y federales deben surgir de núcleo común de hechos. 3.Considerados los reclamos, sin diferenciar si su carácter es estatal o federal, deben ser tales que ordinariamente se esperaría que se resuelvan todos en un mismo proceso judicial. Tomado de Tratado del Derecho al Trabajo Prof. Zeno

18 Dicta de Gibbs 1.Si se desestima federal se desestima estatal 2.Si lo principal es estatal y no lo federal se resuelve sólo lo federal. 3.Si tratar la controversia estatal puede confundir al jurado en su evaluación de la controversia federal no se incluirá la controversia estatal.


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