Our newest Featured Column is by Ronald Rotunda, the distinguished constitutional scholar at Chapman University School of Law in California. He looks at a California judge's recent findings of fraud in Nicaraguan-based injury claims against Dole Food (Apr. 27, May 13, etc.) and suggests a rethinking of why the case belonged in the California courts in the first place. An excerpt:
In Stangvik v. Shiley Inc. (1991) the California Supreme Court declared that California should hear the foreign case, "no matter how inappropriate the forum may be," if the foreign statute of limitations would bar the plaintiff's suit, unless the defendant agrees that he will not raise this defense in the foreign jurisdiction.
Why should U.S. courts impose on U.S. companies a statute of limitations that is more generous to foreign plaintiffs than the statute of limitations the foreign country applies to its own citizens?