Monday, September 12, 2011
Personal jurisdiction (for defendants without the state, at least) requires minimum contacts and a judicial assessment that the assertion of personal jurisdiction be reasonable. The absence of the latter is the thing upon which Asahi was resolved; it was unreasonable to hale Asahi into California state court.
Yet, in the recent Nicastro case, as Howard Wasserman pointed out, neither Justice Kennedy (writing for the plurality) nor Justice Breyer (writing a concurrence with Justice Alito) mentioned the reasonableness prong of the modern PJ test. And that's a bit puzzling, because both cited hypos (if memory serves -- Florida farmers, Appalachian potters, Kenyan coffee makers) where the reasonableness part of the PJ test would have been very relevant in determining PJ. Speculations as to why reasonableness went unmentioned by Kennedy and Breyer?