An End to Judicial Overreaching in Nationwide Service of Process Cases

Statutory Authorization to Bring Supplemental Personal Jurisdiction Within Federal Courts' Powers

Supplemental jurisdiction is a concept usually associated with federal subject matter jurisdiction. When federal courts are presented with claims for which Congress has granted nationwide service of process, they often take the opportunity to exert supplemental personal jurisdiction as well. The Supreme Court, however, has never decided whether this practice is constitutional.This note will assess the cogency of using personal jurisdiction, created by nationwide service of process, to support supplemental personal jurisdiction. Additionally, this note will analyze the concerns that result from the granting of supplemental personal jurisdiction without congressional authorization. The author will examine nationwide service of process from a historical point of view and delineate Congress’s response to this evolving history through legislation. Finally, this note will explore due process implications along with the question of whether statutory authority exists to support supplemental personal jurisdiction. The author will arrive at the conclusion that the power to create supplemental personal jurisdiction belongs only to Congress and should not be exercised by courts.

The full text of this Note is available to download as a PDF.