On May 15, 2019, Justice Scarpulla of the New York County Commercial Division issued a decision in Poms v. Dominion Diamond Corp., 2019 NY Slip Op. 31364(U), holding that being listed on the New York Stock Exchange is insufficient to create personal jurisdiction in New York, explaining:
Under CPLR 302(a)(l), jurisdiction may only be exercised over an out-of-state defendant if that defendant has purposefully transacted business within the state and there is a substantial relationship between the transaction and the claim asserted. Poms first argues that New York courts may exercise specific jurisdiction over Defendants because Dominion is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. However, it has been long held that a corporation is not doing business in New York for the purposes of conferring jurisdiction merely because its shares are listed on a New York Stock Exchange. Therefore, this is an insufficient basis to confer jurisdiction over Defendants.
(Internal quotations and citations omitted).
This decision illustrates an issue that often arises in commercial litigation in New York. Whether the defendant is located on the other side of the world or across the Hudson in New Jersey, a New York court cannot assert jurisdiction over the defendant (that is, hear a case against it) unless there is a proper connection between the defendant and New York. Contact Schlam Stone & Dolan partner John Lundin at firstname.lastname@example.org if you or a client face a situation where you are unsure whether there is jurisdiction over you, or over a party with which you are having a dispute, in New York.
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