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§1.4.1 Choice-influencing considerations (Forum interest as justice-administering state)
  • 1 Milkovich v. Saari

    1
    203 N.W.2d 408 (1973)
    2
    Anne L. MILKOVICH, Respondent,
    v.
    Erma SAARI, et al., Appellants.
    3
    No. 43667.
    4

    Supreme Court of Minnesota.

    5
    January 5, 1973.
    6

    [409] Lindquist & Vennum and Daryle L. Uphoff, Minneapolis, for appellants.

    7

    Palmer, Hood, Crassweller & McCarthy, Duluth, for respondent.

    8

    Heard and considered en banc.

    9
    [410] TODD, Justice.
    10

    Defendants appeal from an order of the trial court denying their motion to dismiss plaintiff's complaint for failure to state a cause of action because the law of Ontario, where plaintiff and defendants reside, has a guest statute requiring proof of gross negligence, which was not alleged. Defendants further appeal from the granting of plaintiff's motion to strike their affirmative defense that the law of Ontario should apply. The trial court certified the question as important and doubtful. We affirm.

    11

    Plaintiff and both defendants are residents of Thunder Bay (formerly Port Arthur), Ontario, Canada. On November 8, 1968, they left Thunder Bay for Duluth, Minnesota, to shop and attend a play. The car belonged to defendant Erma Saari, who drove the first part of the trip. At the United States Customs House at Pigeon River, Minnesota, defendant Judith Rudd took over the driving, and about 40 miles south of the border the car left the road and crashed into rock formations adjacent to the road, causing the injuries to plaintiff. Plaintiff was hospitalized at Duluth for approximately 1½ months and thereafter returned to her home in Thunder Bay.

    12

    Defendant Saari's automobile was garaged, registered, and insured in the Province of Ontario, Canada. Ontario has a guest statute, and if the law of Ontario is to be applied to this case, plaintiff would have to establish gross negligence in order to recover. Minnesota does not have a guest statute, and the rulings of the court would be correct if Minnesota law is to apply.

    13

    1. The field of "conflict of laws" in tort matters has undergone dramatic change in the last decade. Prior to that time, most courts were willing to accept the doctrine of "lex loci," which proved to be easy to administer since the happening of an accident in any particular forum established that the law of the place of the accident would apply. Criticism of this entrenched doctrine mounted from all sides. The issue was met head on in Babcock v. Jackson, 12 N.Y.2d 473, 240 N.Y.S.2d 743, 191 N.E. 2d 279, 95 A.L.R.2d 1 (1963). There the New York Court of Appeals, in an opinion by Mr. Justice (now Chief Justice) Fuld, held that where plaintiff was a New York resident and commenced a trip in the State of New York with the defendant, a New York resident, and was involved in an accident in Ontario, Canada, plaintiff was entitled to have her claim decided under the law of the State of New York. The legislature of New York had rejected the guest statute, which was the law of Ontario and the law of the place of the accident. The decision was premised on the doctrine that New York had the most significant contacts with the litigants and that consequently New York law should apply. The court further held that the law of Ontario, the place of the accident, should not apply, since Ontario had no significant contact with the litigants.

    14

    Application of Babcock to different fact situations has been confusing. The Babcock decision left open the question of the manner of determining each state's interest in a particular situation, and it did not discuss the issues of whether the relationship of the parties is established at the commencement of the trip and whether the relationship continues to be governed by the law of the state in which it was established or changes as state or international lines are crossed. This confusion is best illustrated in Dym v. Gordon, 16 N.Y. 2d 120, 262 N.Y.S.2d 463, 209 N.E.2d 792 (1965). In that case, plaintiffs were both New York residents and students in Colorado. They met in Colorado and the plaintiff was injured in an automobile accident in which she alleged the defendant was negligent. New York again had no guest statute, but Colorado did. The New York court in a divided opinion held that the Colorado law was applicable and placed emphasis on the fact that the parties met in Colorado and established their relationship as guest and host in Colorado. This seemed to introduce a new doctrine, namely, [411] "seat of the relationship," into the law. This doctrine was short-lived and was apparently put to rest in Macey v. Rozbicki, 18 N.Y.2d 289, 274 N.Y.S.2d 591, 221 N.E. 2d 380 (1966). In Macey the New York court shifted the emphasis away from the seat of the relationship and seemed to focus more on the common domicile of guest and host as determinative of the applicable law. In a concurring opinion Mr. Justice Keating more forcefully argued that the court "should no longer follow the decision in Dym v. Gordon [supra]." 18 N.Y.2d 298, 274 N.Y.S.2d 598, 221 N.E.2d 385.

    15

    Finally, the New York court was confronted with the exact factual situation we have in this case. In Kell v. Henderson, 47 Misc.2d 992, 263 N.Y.S.2d 647 (1965), affirmed, 26 A.D.2d 595, 270 N.Y.S.2d 552 (1966), the New York Supreme Court allowed the plaintiff to proceed under New York law, and the Appellate Division affirmed. In that case, the plaintiff, a minor child, in the company of the two defendants, a mother and son, set out from Ontario, Canada, to tour nearby New York. The plaintiff and the defendants were all residents of Ontario. The car was garaged in Ontario and insured in Ontario. While being driven in New York by the defendant son, the car went out of control and careened off the highway, striking a bridge and injuring Miss Kell. The defendants in that case argued that under the Babcock decision the most significant interests were in Ontario and not New York and therefore the plaintiff could not recover by reason of the Ontario guest statute. The New York Supreme Court, after pointing out that the state had significant interests by reason of its traffic vehicle regulations, its public policy regarding guest statutes, and the fact that its laws applied to residents and nonresidents equally, stated (47 Misc.2d 993, 263 N.Y.S.2d 649):

    16
    "The conflict-of-laws doctrine enunciated in Babcock (supra) recognizes that we no longer mechanically turn to the common-law rule of lex loci delicti in tort cases. The courts now have adopted a rule of choice of law in a conflict situation which looks to reason and justice in its selection of which law is to apply and which fits the needs of today's changing world where frequent travel is the rule, rather than the exception."
    17

    This case would seem to have completed the cycle for New York in moving fully away from the lex loci doctrine. However, in Arbuthnot v. Allbright, 35 A.D.2d 315, 316 N.Y.S.2d 391 (1970), the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, again sitting in the same division but with different justices, sought to distinguish Kell v. Henderson, supra, on a procedural issue which, in fact, was an additional basis for the decision which had been advanced in concurring opinions in both the lower court and the appellate division. Under the facts of Arbuthnot, which are indistinguishable from the facts in Kell, the court held that the Ontario law should apply. The New York Court of Appeals has apparently not yet acted on this conflict but hopefully will dispose of the conflicting cases and probably reverse the Arbuthnot case and support the Kell decision, not only because of the shallowness of the opinion in Arbuthnot, but also because of the substantial backing Kell has received from various law commentators and professors.[1]

    18

    While New York was experiencing its difficulties in the changing field of conflict of laws, a fact situation arose in a case appealed to the Supreme Court of New Hampshire, which allowed its learned Mr. Chief Justice Kenison to enunciate a doctrine which has been followed by many courts throughout the country, including our own Minnesota court. In Clark v. Clark, 107 N.H. 351, 222 A.2d 205 (1966), a husband and wife had left their home in New Hampshire to proceed to another part of New Hampshire for a visit and were to [412] return that evening. Part of their trip took them through Vermont, where the accident occurred. The plaintiff wife brought action in New Hampshire against her husband and sought an order of the court that the substantive law of New Hampshire governed the rights of the parties. New Hampshire had no guest statute and Vermont did. In a carefully reasoned opinion, Mr. Chief Justice Kenison traced the history and difficulty of the lex loci rule. He then proceeded to adopt five basic "choice-influencing considerations" to be applied to these cases. The basic premises for the considerations adopted by the court were first proposed by Professor Robert Leflar in his article, "Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y. U.L.Rev. 267, 279, and briefly stated, the tests selected by the New Hampshire court are: (a) Predictability of results; (b) maintenance of interstate and international order; (c) simplification of the judicial task; (d) advancement of the forum's governmental interests; and (e) application of the better rule of law.

    19

    The court pointed out that the first three tests caused very few problems. Predictability of results can be overlooked since basically this test relates to consensual transactions where people should know in advance what law will govern their act. Obviously, no one plans to have an accident, and, except for the remote possibility of forum shopping, this test is of little import in an automobile accident case. As to the second consideration, the court found little trouble since under this heading no more is called for than that the court apply the law of no state which does not have substantial connection with the total facts and the particular issue being litigated. The third point, simplification of the judicial task, poses no problem since the courts are fully capable of administering the law of another forum if called upon to do so.

    20

    The court observed that in selecting the law of a particular case the last two considerations carry most weight. In the case before it, the court found adequate governmental interest in applying its state's law and concluded that the New Hampshire law was unquestionably the better law and should be applied.

    21

    2. During this same period, the law of the State of Minnesota has undergone a change. Minnesota had followed the doctrine of lex loci as recently as our decision in Phelps v. Benson, 252 Minn. 457, 90 N.W.2d 533 (1958), where we reiterated our adherence to that doctrine.

    22

    On April 1, 1966, our court handed down two decisions which indicated our determination to replace lex loci with a more rational choice-of-law methodology: Balts v. Balts, 273 Minn. 419, 142 N.W.2d 66; and Kopp v. Rechtzigel, 273 Minn. 441, 141 N.W.2d 526. In these cases, we cited with approval Babcock v. Jackson, supra, and, in Balts, we quoted with approval language from McSwain v. McSwain, 420 Pa. 86, 93, 215 A.2d 677, 681 (1966):

    23
    "* * * Time found the rule [of lex loci delicti] increasingly criticized as a mechanical methodology, predicated on the out-moded `vested right' theory, and emphasizing certainty and predictability at the expense of other, frequently more relevant considerations." 273 Minn. 425, 142 N.W.2d 70.
    24

    In Balts, we applied a newly adopted doctrine which allowed an action by a parent against a child for tort and applied this Minnesota rule of law to Minnesota residents who were injured in an accident in Wisconsin, whose law did not permit such a recovery.

    25

    In the Kopp case, despite the existence of a guest statute in South Dakota, we applied Minnesota common-law rules of negligence and allowed recovery by a Minnesota plaintiff against a Minnesota defendant who was injured in a South Dakota accident where the trip originated in Minnesota and the parties intended to return to Minnesota.

    26

    We were next faced with the problem in Schneider v. Nichols, 280 Minn. 139, 158 [413] N.W.2d 254 (1968). In that case, the defendant had lived in Moorhead, Minnesota, but was at the time of the accident a resident of Fargo, North Dakota. He was employed by a national concern as a traveling sales representative from its branch office in Fargo. The employer provided liability insurance for defendant's vehicle in Fargo and the car was garaged in that city. The automobile in question carried Minnesota license plates and the defendant had a Minnesota driver's license. On the date of the accident, he met the plaintiff in a parking lot at Breckenridge, Minnesota. Plaintiff was a resident of the State of Minnesota. The parties had no preplanned itinerary, but during the course of the evening traveled on roads in both Minnesota and North Dakota, since the communities involved are situated on the border. The accident occurred in North Dakota. Plaintiff was hospitalized and treated at Breckenridge, and an action was commenced by the plaintiff in the Minnesota courts. Defendant claimed that no cause of action existed because North Dakota had a guest statute. Our court rejected this argument and applied Minnesota rules of commonlaw negligence. In so doing, our court quoted with approval the choice-influencing considerations laid down by Mr. Chief Justice Kenison in Clark v. Clark, supra, and also quoted his statement regarding guest statutes (280 Minn. 146, 158 N.W.2d 259):

    27
    "* * * No American state has newly adopted a guest statute for many years. Courts of states which did adopt them are today construing them much more narrowly, evidencing their dissatisfaction with them. * * * Though still on the books, they contradict the spirit of the times. * * * Unless other considerations demand it, we should not go out of our way to enforce such a law of another state as against the better law of our own state."
    28

    We next considered this problem in Bolgrean v. Stich, 293 Minn. 8, 196 N.W.2d 442 (1972). In that case, the defendant, a Minnesota resident, called the plaintiff, a former Minnesota resident who was then living in Fargo, for a date. Defendant's automobile was garaged, licensed, and insured in Minnesota. The defendant picked up the plaintiff and proceeded to a dance in South Dakota where the accident occurred. We allowed the plaintiff to commence the action in Minnesota, where she had returned to live at the time of the litigation, and rejected the application of the guest statutes of both North and South Dakota. In so doing, we indicated the Minnesota court would group the contacts of the different states with the controversy in order to find the "center of gravity." We again relied on the better-law consideration and said (293 Minn. 10, 196 N.W.2d 444):

    29
    "The fact that we believe that Minnesota has the better law reinforces our decision. The legislature of this state has shown its antipathy toward the guest statute by refusing to enact one."
    30

    Finally, in Allen v. Gannaway, 294 Minn. 1, 199 N.W.2d 424 (1972), we reaffirmed the position we adopted in Balts, Kopp, Schneider, and Bolgrean, and applied Minnesota law to a Nevada automobile accident involving residents of Minnesota and a Massachusetts resident who had been attending college in Minnesota.

    31

    3. The facts of this case now complete the cycle. The choice-influencing considerations proposed by Professor Leflar and set forth by Mr. Chief Justice Kenison in Clark v. Clark, supra, were adopted by our court in Schneider v. Nichols, supra, indicating our preference for the better-law approach and our rejection of the guest statute concept of various jurisdictions. We have come to the conclusion in this case that plaintiff should be allowed to proceed with her action under our common-law rules of negligence and should not be bound by the guest statute requirements of the Province of Ontario.

    32

    [414] 4. As we indicated earlier in this opinion, the New York case of Kell v. Henderson, supra, is on "all fours" with the facts of this case. Professor Leflar, whose original article provided the groundwork for the opinion of Mr. Chief Justice Kenison in Clark v. Clark, supra, which is the foundation of the approach our court has taken in these matters, had occasion to comment on the effect of Kell v. Henderson, supra, in an article entitled, "Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations, 54 Calif.L.Rev. 1584. Professor Leflar set forth the fact situation of the Kell case. He then proceeded to analyze the decision in the light of these choice-influencing considerations. He pointed out that predictability was irrelevant since automobile accidents are seldom planned, and that, since the accident occurred in New York, that state was an appropriate jurisdiction in which to try the lawsuit. He further pointed out that neither international order or ease of judicial administration had much bearing on the case.

    33

    5. On the consideration of governmental interest, Professor Leflar found adequate support for the decision rendered by the New York court. In so doing, he rejected the concept of the practical interest of the state in the supervision and safety of its state highways since the rule in question, unlike rules of the road and definitions of negligence, does not bear upon vehicle operation as such. Instead, he pointed out that the factor to be considered is the relevant effect the New York rule has on the duty of host to guest and the danger of collusion between them to defraud the host's insurer. New York's interest in applying its own law rather than Ontario law on these issues, he found to be based primarily on its status as a justice-administering state. In that status, it is strongly concerned with seeing that persons who come into the New York courts to litigate controversies with substantial New York connections have these cases determined according to rules consistent with New York concepts of justice, or at least not inconsistent with them. That will be as true for nondomiciliary litigants as for domiciliaries. This interest will not manifest itself clearly if the out-of-state rule does not run contrary to some strong socio-legal policy of the forum, but it will become a major consideration if there is such a strong opposing local policy.

    34

    Professor Leflar then pointed out that this consideration leads to preference for what is regarded as the better rule of law, that New York has such a preference, and that it is a vigorous one. He concluded that the combination of the last two items, governmental interest and better rule of law, called for the application of New York law. His statements and reasoning apply equally to the facts of this case and lead to the conclusion that Minnesota should apply its better rule of law and should allow plaintiff to proceed with her action.[2]

    35

    6. Strong support for the better-rule-of-law concept appears in an article by Professor Albert A. Ehrenzweig, "False Conflicts" and the "Better Rule": Threat and Promise in Multistate Tort Law, 53 Va.L.Rev. 847, 853, in which he wrote:

    36
    "Express recognition of the forum's right and duty to apply its own better rule as such is an ancient tradition which apparently succumbed to the 19th century's internationalist conceptualism. We need only remember the priority given by early statutists to the statuta favorabilia of the forum against foreign statuta odiosa, or Master Aldricus' choice of the custom `potior et utilior,' or Byzantium's philanthropoteron. The widespread disregard of foreign Sunday laws, fellow-servant rules, and married women's incapacities, as well as statutes of [415] frauds, and limitations on wrongful death damages, may serve as modern examples.
    37
    "Now, we shall, of course, not `ask the judge simply to express a preference between two rules.' This would, indeed, `abolish our centuries-old subject.' But we should face the `fact of life' that judges, our best judges, often take advantage of the `looseness in the joints of the [choice-of-law] apparatus,' or employ `manipulative techniques such as characterization and renvoi,' and all-purpose tools such as the `most significant relationship,' in order to substitute a better foreign rule for much `that is archiac and foolish' in their own law.
    38
    "Thus one cannot easily suppress the suspicion, or should we say the hope, that it was the application of a `better-rule' approach rather than the invoked non-rule of the `most significant relationship' that led the New York Court of Appeals in one case to permit `a substantial recovery' for a crash-death under Pennsylvania law rather than to limit damages under Maryland law, and in another case to allow a direct action against a liability insurer under Puerto Rico law. And may we not suspect, or should we say hope, that it was preference for the better rule rather than the professed belief in the lex contractus of a spurious `center of gravity' that led the Wisconsin Supreme Court to apply to a Wisconsin automobile accident of Wisconsin domiciliaries a Minnesota rule more favorable to the victim than forum law? Or should we seriously assume that the court would have found the `center of gravity' in Minnesota if the better rule had been its own? And would the English Chancery have applied as `substantive' rather than `procedural' the German law regarding the survival presumption in a common disaster if English law had adopted the `better' German rule of simultaneous death rather than the obsolute presumption of the elder's survival?
    39
    "Whether or not general express recognition of the `better-rule' approach can be justified at present, we must at least acknowledge the validity of the proposition advanced by Currie that transient (`disinterested') third states, having no incentive to follow the `stay-at-home' trend, are likely to choose what they consider the better of two foreign rules. Moreover, admiralty courts in their more forthright manner have sometimes acknowledged their bias toward a `better rule.' And may we not ultimately in part explain the great willingness of American courts to permit parties to choose their own law in terms of a simi-law better-rule approach?
    40
    "Although the `better-rule' principle is not generally capable of replacing conflicts rules, I see little justification within the limits set by settled law for the prevailing horror against the recognition of that principle as one of many determining the growth of conflicts law. The very growth of common-law rules is based on the judge's choice between competing principles, choices expressed in the process of overruling or distinguishing earlier judicial pronouncements. In purely domestic cases open admission of this technique is often hampered by justified respect for `certainty' and the parties' expectations, a respect which also accounts, of course, for both legislative and judicial reluctance to act with retroactive effect. In cases involving foreign elements, however, this consideration often should be, and generally is, less relevant, and the path is open for the courageous judge to prepare the ground for a domestic reform by open preference for `better' foreign solutions."
    41

    In Schneider v. Nichols, 280 Minn. 139, 144, 158 N.W.2d 254, 257, we quoted with approval language from Wilcox v. Wilcox, 26 Wis.2d 617, 633, 133 N.W.2d 408, 416 (1965), an opinion written by Mr. Justice Heffernan. Plaintiff, in support of her position, relies on this case and cites two other Wisconsin cases, Heath v. Zellmer, 35 Wis. [416] 2d 578, 151 N.W.2d 664 (1967), and Zelinger v. State Sand & Gravel Co., 38 Wis.2d 98, 156 N.W.2d 466 (1968).

    42

    Defendants seek to distinguish these cases by pointing out that in each of them there was an interested Wisconsin party in the litigation. However, in Conklin v. Horner, 38 Wis.2d 468, 157 N.W.2d 579 (1968), the Wisconsin court was confronted with a fact situation again exactly on all fours with our situation. There the court, speaking through Mr. Justice Heffernan, adopted the better-rule approach which we have adopted here and, in a well-reasoned opinion, arrived at the same conclusion that this court has. In the Wisconsin case, the litigants were all residents of the State of Illinois; the automobile in question was licensed and garaged in Illinois; the trip originated in Illinois with the intent and purpose to return to Illinois; and the insurance policy was issued in the State of Illinois. Illinois has a guest statute; Wisconsin does not. The court in that case first considered the problem of labeling any procedure in determining rules of law to be applied, saying (38 Wis.2d 473, 157 N.W.2d 581):

    43
    "The defendants' claim is based upon our decision in Wilcox v. Wilcox (1965), 26 Wis.2d 617, 133 N.W.2d 408, where we abandoned the choice-of-law rule of lex loci delicti and adopted in its stead a more flexible methodology based upon the qualitative analysis of the contacts that one or more jurisdictions might have with the relevant facts. We adopted the general approach of Babcock v. Jackson (1963), 12 N.Y.2d 473, 240 N.Y.S.2d 743, 191 N.E.2d 279, 95 A.L.R.2d 1, and the basic principle of Tentative Draft No. 9, Restatement, Conflicts of Laws 2d, which may be denominated as the `center of gravity,' `grouping of contacts,' `dominant interest,' `interest oriented,' or `interest analysis' approach. Zelinger v. State Sand and Gravel Co., [38 Wis. 2d] 98, 156 N.W.2d 466 [1968]. We emphasized that what we adopted was not a rule, but a method of analysis that permitted dissection of the jural bundle constituting a tort and its environment to determine what elements therein were relevant to a reasonable choice of law.
    44
    "When the Wilcox Case is so viewed, it is apparent that we cannot conclude that, when one set of facts leads logically to the law of the forum, the reverse, or the apparent reverse, of these facts will lead to the opposite conclusion." (Italics supplied.)
    45

    We, too, adopt this concept that what the court is considering is a methodology and not a rule.

    46

    The Wisconsin court then proceeded to adopt the choice-influencing considerations of Professor Leflar as expounded by Mr. Chief Justice Kenison in Clark v. Clark, supra. The court considered the various rules in the same manner that Professor Leflar applied them to Kell v. Henderson, supra. It should be noted that the Wisconsin court gave much more credence to the state interest in its highways and state regulations than Professor Leflar would ascribe. Following this reasoning process, the Wisconsin court concluded that the Wisconsin law was the better law to apply under the circumstances.

    47

    We find then that in Conklin the Wisconsin court, premising its choice-of-law methodology on the factors initially propagated by Professor Leflar and Mr. Chief Justice Kenison of New Hamphire, has resolved substantially the same fact situation as now appears before us by applying the common-law liability of the forum and place of the accident rather than the guest statute of the residence of the parties. See, also, Kell v. Henderson, supra. Since our methodology owes a similar debt to Professor Leflar and Mr. Chief Justice Kenison, we find their reasoning relevant and persuasive.

    48

    7. We have already noted the relative unimportance of predictability of results to tort actions. Similarly, the simplification of the judicial task need not concern [417] us to any great extent since we have no doubt our judicial system could in the appropriate case apply the guest statute rule of gross negligence as readily as our common-law rule. Interstate and international relations are maintained without harm where, as here, the forum state has a substantial connection with the facts and issues involved. This requirement is amply met by the fact that the accident occurred in Minnesota, as well as by the fact that plaintiff was hospitalized for well over a month in the state.

    49

    The compelling factors in this case are the advancement of the forum's governmental interests and the application of the better law. While there may be more deterrent effect in our common-law rule of liability as opposed to the guest statute requirement of gross negligence, the main governmental interest involved is that of any "justice-administering state." Leflar, Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations, 54 Calif.L.Rev. 1584, 1594. In that posture, we are concerned that our courts not be called upon to determine issues under rules which, however, accepted they may be in other states, are inconsistent with our own concept of fairness and equity. We might also note that persons injured in automobile accidents occurring within our borders can reasonably be expected to require treatment in our medical facilities, both public and private. In the instant case, plaintiff incurred medical bills in a Duluth hospital which have already been paid, but we are loath to place weight on the individual case for fear it might offer even minor incentives to "hospital shop" or to create litigation-directed pressures on the payment of debts to medical facilities. Suffice it to say that we recognize that medical costs are likely to be incurred with a consequent governmental interest that injured persons not be denied recovery on the basis of doctrines foreign to Minnesota.

    50

    In our search for the better rule, we are firmly convinced of the superiority of the common-law rule of liability to that of the Ontario guest statute. We can find little reason for the strict limitation of a host's liability to his guest beyond the fear of collusive suits and the vague disapproval of a guest "biting the hand that feeds him." Neither rationale is persuasive. We are convinced the judicial system can uncover collusive suits without such overinclusive rules, and we do not find any discomfort in the prospect of a guest suing his host for injuries suffered through the host's simple negligence.

    51

    Accordingly, we hold that Minnesota law should be applied to this lawsuit.

    52

    Affirmed.

    53
    PETERSON, Justice (dissenting).
    54

    The "center-of-gravity-of-the contacts" theory of conflict of laws has been adopted in this state, and we have applied it in situations where an automobile trip started and was intended to terminate in this state, where the host-guest relationship was formed in this state, or where the place of registration or garaging of the automobile was in this state. Balts v. Balts, 273 Minn. 419, 142 N.W.2d 66 (1966); Kopp v. Rechtzigel, 273 Minn. 441, 141 N.W.2d 526 (1966); Schneider v. Nichols, 280 Minn. 139, 158 N.W.2d 254 (1968); Bolgrean v. Stich, 293 Minn. 8, 196 N.W.2d 442 (1972); Allen v. Gannaway, 294 Minn. 1, 199 N.W. 2d 424 (1972). Until today, however, we have not considered the mere happening of an automobile accident in this state a sufficient contact with the forum to establish the center of gravity here. In my view, the center of gravity is in Ontario, not Minnesota.

    55

    The "choice-influencing factor" in the majority opinion is simply that Minnesota law is "better law" because, unlike Ontario law, this state has no guest statute. Notwithstanding our undoubted preference for this forum's standard of liability, I am not persuaded that decision should turn on that factor alone. We may assume that these Canadian citizens have concurred in the [418] rule of law of their own government as just, so the law of this American forum is not for them the "better" standard of justice. The litigation, indeed, was first initiated by plaintiff in the courts of Ontario and was later commenced in Minnesota as an act of forum shopping.

    56

    Our own cases, of course, do not compel such a decision. Two cases from other jurisdictions that are "on all fours" are not persuasive. The New York case of Kell v. Henderson, 47 Misc.2d 992, 263 N.Y.S. 2d 647 (1965), affirmed, 26 A.D.2d 595, 270 N.Y.S.2d 552 (1966), is not the decision of that state's highest court and, in addition, is at odds with the later case of Arbuthnot v. Allbright, 35 A.D.2d 315, 316 N.Y.S.2d 391 (1970). The Wisconsin case of Conklin v. Horner, 38 Wis.2d 468, 157 N.W.2d 579 (1968), is a final expression of its highest court, based upon a well-written majority opinion of Mr. Justice Heffernan. I nevertheless am more persuaded by the dissenting opinion of two justices. Mr. Chief Justice Hallows, in dissent, appropriately observed that the so-called "methodology of analysis" is really little more than a mechanical application of the law of the forum. As he wrote (38 Wis.2d 491, 157 N.W.2d 590): "If we are going to be consistent only in applying the law of the forum, then we are merely giving lip service to the new `significant contacts' rule."

    57
    OTIS, J., took no part in the consideration or decision of this case.
    58

    [1] Rosenberg & Trautman, Two Views on Kell v. Henderson, 67 Col.L.Rev. 459; Leflar, Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations, 54 Calif.L. Rev. 1584, 1593 to 1595.

    59

    [2] Other writers, in commenting on Kell v. Henderson, 47 Misc.2d 992, 263 N.Y.S.2d 647 (1965), affirmed, 26 A.D.2d 595, 270 N.Y.S.2d 552 (1966), came to the same conclusion. Rosenberg & Trautman, Two Views on Kell v. Henderson, 67 Col.L.Rev. 459.

  • 2 Schwartz v. Consolidated Freightways Corp. of Del.

    1
    221 N.W.2d 665 (1974)
    2
    Roy SCHWARTZ, Appellant-Respondent,
    v.
    CONSOLIDATED FREIGHTWAYS CORPORATION OF DELAWARE, Respondent-Appellant,
    Spector Freight System, Inc. of Illinois, Respondent.
    3
    Nos. 44158, 44281, 44509 and 44525.
    4

    Supreme Court of Minnesota.

    5
    August 2, 1974.
    6
    Rehearing Denied October 2, 1974.
    7

    [666] Fletcher Dahl & Riedy, John F. Fletcher, St. Cloud, Fitch & Johnson, Minneapolis, for appellant-respondent.

    8

    Cousineau, McGuire, Shaughnessy & Anderson and Robert J. McGuire, Minneapolis, for Consolidated Freightways.

    9

    Thompson, Hessian, Fletcher, McKasy & Soderberg and George Roehrdanz, Minneapolis, for Spector Freight System Inc.

    10

    Heard before SHERAN, C. J., and PETERSON, KELLY, and YETKA, JJ., and considered and decided by the court.

    11
    YETKA, Justice.
    12

    Plaintiff brought an action to recover for personal injuries sustained in a three-truck accident in the State of Indiana allegedly due to the negligence of the defendants, Consolidated Freightways Corporation of Delaware and Spector Freight System, Inc. Trial before a jury was commenced in Hennepin County District Court on November 20, 1972. Prior to submission of the case to the jury, the court ruled, as a matter of law, that the Indiana rule of contributory negligence would apply rather than the Minnesota comparative negligence provision, Minn.St. 604.01. However, at plaintiff's request the case was submitted to the jury in the form of special interrogatories requiring percentage apportionment of negligence attributed to each party. The jury returned a verdict finding defendants 90 percent negligent and plaintiff 10 percent negligent. In its conclusions of law, dated December 4, 1972, the court denied recovery to plaintiff based on the aforesaid ruling that the Indiana law of contributory negligence applied to this case. Plaintiff appeals from the judgment. Consolidated Freightways and Spector Freight appeal from an order of the district court denying their motions to amend or set aside certain answers to special interrogatories. The same order dismissed without prejudice motions of the defendants for judgment n. o. v. or a new trial in the event this court determines that comparative negligence applies.

    13

    Affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded.

    14

    The case at bar arises from a collision involving three semi-tractor-trailer units which occurred on the Indiana tollway.

    15

    One vehicle involved in this collision was owned by defendant Consolidated Freightways and driven by an Indiana resident. His codriver was a resident of Ohio. The unit was garaged and maintained in Ohio, but the tractor was licensed in Delaware. Neither the tractor nor the trailer was licensed to operate in Minnesota. [667] At the time of the accident this unit was making a run from Akron, Ohio, to Chicago, Illinois, and was to return to Akron.

    16

    A second vehicle involved in the collision was leased to defendant Spector Freight System, Inc. This unit was owned and operated by an Ohio resident and maintained and garaged in Ohio. At the time of the accident, this vehicle was delivering a shipment from Cleveland, Ohio, to Kenosha, Wisconsin.

    17

    Both Consolidated and Spector are foreign corporations to the State of Minnesota. However, both operate in interstate commerce and are licensed to do business in Minnesota.

    18

    The third vehicle involved in the collision was owned by Northern Cooperative, Inc., of Wadena, Minnesota, and driven by plaintiff. Plaintiff and his codriver had left Wadena to deliver commodities to Toledo and Columbus, Ohio. Thereafter they had picked up a load in Barberton, Ohio, and were en route back to Wadena when the collision took place. Plaintiff is a lifelong resident of Minnesota and currently resides in Wadena. His codriver is also a Minnesota resident. The semi unit belonging to plaintiff's employer is licensed, maintained, garaged, and registered in Minnesota.

    19

    The collision in question occurred at approximately 5:05 a. m., November 20, 1964, in the westbound side of the Indiana tollway, near the city of Elkhart, Indiana.

    20

    The Consolidated vehicle had stopped behind a line of traffic in the right-hand lane due to a stoppage of some sort, resulting from causes which do not appear on the record. The Consolidated driver testified that his warning lights and four-way flashers were in operation at that time. The evidence as to whether this driver had set out flares or fuses is disputed.

    21

    The weather conditions at the time of the accident were disputed.

    22

    The Spector vehicle then approached the stopped Consolidated unit from the rear and came to a stop directly behind said vehicle.

    23

    Plaintiff had been following the same route and traveling in the same lane as defendants' trucks. As he approached them from the rear at a speed of 45 to 50 miles per hour, plaintiff began to pull out into the left-hand lane to pass. He struck the rear of the Spector vehicle, driving it into the rear of the Consolidated unit.

    24

    Plaintiff was severely injured and received initial medical treatment at a hospital in Elkhart, Indiana. He was then transferred to a hospital in Wadena. Plaintiff has also spent time in a Fargo, North Dakota, hospital in order to receive medical treatment for his injuries.

    25

    The issues on this appeal are:

    26

    1. Does the Indiana law of contributory negligence or the Minnesota comparative negligence provision apply to the case at bar?

    27

    2. Does the evidence support the verdict?

    28

    1. Plaintiff places principal reliance on this court's decision in Milkovich v. Saari, 295 Minn. 155, 203 N.W.2d 408 (1973). He urges that the considerations set forth in that opinion are applicable to the case at bar, both in terms of advancement of the forum's legitimate governmental interest and application of the better rule of law.

    29

    Defendants take the view that the facts relevant to this choice-of-law question mandate application of Indiana law in this case. They allege that the contacts with Minnesota are less significant than the contacts with Indiana. They further contend that a "better law" analysis is not applicable to comparative versus contributory negligence, and in any case, such analysis is subservient to the overriding interests of Indiana. Defendants also take the view that there must be a "consistent application of one law" and that plaintiff was forum shopping.

    30

    [668] In Milkovich v. Saari, supra, this court discussed in detail the recent changes in the choice-of-law rules of this and other jurisdictions. With reference to tort cases it was pointed out that the traditional rule of lex loci delecti has been replaced by the more rational choice-of-law methodology first enunciated by Professor Robert Leflar in his article entitled Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y.U.L.Rev. 267, 279. Adoption of this methodology by this court in Milkovich has in effect replaced the traditional choice-of-law rules with a flexible approach which takes into account policy as well as factual considerations in arriving at a choice of law in a given situation.

    31

    As pointed out in Milkovich, only the last two items of Professor Leflar's five-point methodology are relevant to tort cases. These two considerations are: (1) Advancement of the forum's governmental interests and (2) application of the better rule of law.

    32

    Advancement of the forum's governmental interests contemplates application both in terms of factual contacts with the forum and in terms of the state's policy considerations relevant to its choice of law.

    33

    In Milkovich the only facts linking the forum to the accident were that the accident occurred in this state and that the plaintiff received medical care in this state. Yet, these facts, in concert with policy considerations, were held to create governmental interests on the part of the forum sufficient to support application of Minnesota law, even though the parties were from Ontario and the automobile involved in the accident was, in all respects, linked exclusively to Ontario.

    34

    The factual contacts creating a Minnesota interest in the instant case appear much stronger than those factual contacts present in Milkovich. Here, plaintiff is a lifelong resident of Minnesota and sustained his injuries in the course of his employment as a truckdriver for a Minnesota corporation. The vehicle which he was driving was owned by this Minnesota employer, and was licensed, registered, garaged, maintained, and insured in Minnesota. Plaintiff had a Minnesota driver's license. The excursion which had brought plaintiff to Indiana originated in Minnesota and was to terminate in Minnesota (although the load plaintiff was hauling was to be delivered to Fargo, North Dakota). Plaintiff has received and continues to receive medical care in Minnesota for the injuries sustained in the accident. He currently resides in Minnesota, saddled with crippling physical disabilities arising from the collision. Thus, the economic impact of these injuries and of subsequent litigation will be felt by Minnesota residents. In addition, both defendant corporations, although foreign to Minnesota, are licensed to do business in this state, and presumably exercise this privilege. Minnesota therefore has a clear governmental interest in the outcome of plaintiff's case.

    35

    The State of Indiana, on the other hand, has a much less substantial governmental interest. The accident in question occurred in Indiana and plaintiff received initial medical attention in that state. The fact that one of Consolidated's drivers was an Indiana resident is irrelevant since this individual is not a party to the litigation and is therefore not affected by the outcome.

    36

    Defendants advance the rather ingenious argument that if the reasoning of Milkovich is applied to the case at bar, then, "obviously, Indiana law would have to apply." However, Milkovich cannot be read as holding that, if that action had been brought in Ontario, an Ontario court could not have applied the Ontario guest statute.

    37

    Once jurisdiction attaches, the forum may, subject to the rather minimal due process standards, apply its own choice-of-law rules to determine what law governs the case. Crider v. Zurich Ins. Co., 380 U.S. 39, 85 S.Ct. 769, 13 L.Ed.2d 641 (1965); Home Insurance Co. v. Dick, 281 U.S. 397, 50 S.Ct. 338, 74 L.Ed. 926 (1930). See, also, Professor Leflar's article entitled States' Rights in Conflict of Laws, 19 Ark.L.Rev. 142.

    38

    [669] Professor Leflar also states in Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y.U.L.Rev. 267, 270, 292:

    39
    "* * * The law of the forum F, on choice of law, is the law that courts of forum F will follow.
    40
    * * * * * *
    41
    "* * * It is not at all unusual for one state to discover that it has such [governmental] interests in a set of facts though another state's courts would say otherwise."
    42

    In the instant case, had the litigation been brought in Indiana, it is possible that courts of that state could cite Milkovich as supporting authority for application of Indiana law. But it is incorrect to cite Milkovich as standing for the proposition that, under identical facts, the Minnesota Supreme Court would apply the law of the site of the accident. Milkovich, by adopting the Leflar methodology, has announced that choice-of-law questions in this state will be decided under flexible standards, free from the traditional rules that demanded resolution of such questions on a pure "contacts analysis." Rather, the Leflar methodology demands that choice-of-law issues be decided, not only upon "contacts," but also on policy considerations.

    43

    While we hold that Minnesota's governmental interest in this case is sufficient to apply the Minnesota comparative negligence statute rather than the contributory negligence law of the State of Indiana so that we need not decide the case under the better-law rule, we feel compelled to point out that the jury's findings of only 10 percent negligence on the part of plaintiff and 90 percent on the part of defendants, which verdict would compel judgment for defendants under the law of Indiana, does little to convince us Indiana has the better law. Despite the fact the jury found plaintiff's negligence to be relatively slight, the Indiana rule would leave him to bear the entire burden of his severe injuries. It is within the ambit of this court's power to find such a result contrary to basic state policy. This court as early as 1938, in commenting on the contributory negligence doctrine, then the law in Minnesota, said:

    44
    "No one can appreciate more than we the hardship of depriving plaintiff of his verdict and of all right to collect damages from defendant; but the rule of contributory negligence, through no fault of ours, remains in our law and gives us no alternative other than to hold that defendant is entitled to judgment notwithstanding the verdict. It would be hard to imagine a case more illustrative of the truth that in operation the rule of comparative negligence would serve justice more faithfully than that of contributory negligence." Haeg v. Sprague, Warner & Co. Inc., 202 Minn. 425, 429, 281 N.W. 261, 263 (1938).
    45

    Defendants argue that plaintiff was forum shopping. Suffice it to say that the courts of this state are open to those residents and nonresidents alike who properly invoke, within constitutional limitations, the jurisdiction of these courts. In the case at bar, plaintiff is a Minnesota resident who is currently suffering from extensive and severe injuries. It would be at least plausible to presume that Minnesota courts would be plaintiff's logical choice. Further, it is noteworthy that plaintiff did not first bring his action in another state and then later bring suit in this state.

    46

    2. The district court properly denied defendants' motions to amend certain answers given by the jury to interrogatories. There is ample evidence in the record to support the jury's verdict.

    47

    3. Those portions of the alternative motions seeking judgment n. o. v. or a new trial, which the trial court dismissed without prejudice, do not appear to have significant merit once the sufficiency of the evidence has been determined. However, since the trial court has not ruled on whether a new trial should be granted on the ground of misconduct of counsel, or on the ground that the verdict was excessive, the case must be remanded to the district court for determinations on renewal of the [670] motions on these two issues alone since we find no error by the trial court on any rulings made heretofore except on the issue, discussed previously, of whether Minnesota or Indiana law should be applied.

    48

    Since the accident occurred in 1964, however, and the action was brought in 1969, plaintiff is entitled to a speedy determination of this matter. We remand to the trial court for consideration of the motions for a new trial only on condition defendants renew their motions and file a bond in the amount of the verdict in this case plus interest from the date judgment was initially entered in the district court to the day of the issuance of this opinion. If the bond is not filed within 15 days of the issuance of this opinion, judgment for plaintiff shall be entered.

    49

    Affirmed in part, reversed in part, and remanded.

    50
    PETERSON, Justice (concurring specially).
    51

    I concur in the result, recognizing that the so-called methodology of analysis adopted and applied in Milkovich v. Saari, 295 Minn. 155, 203 N.W.2d 408 (1973), is elastic enough to support today's decision reversing the contrary conclusions of the trial court.

  • 3 Schiele v. Charles Vogel Mfg. Co., Inc.

    1
    787 F.Supp. 1541 (1992)
    2
    Nancy C. SCHIELE, Plaintiff,
    v.
    CHARLES VOGEL MANUFACTURING CO., INC., a Wisconsin corporation, Harvey Vogel Manufacturing Co., a Minnesota corporation, and H. Charles Vogel, Jr., Defendants.
    3
    Civ. No. 4-90-591.
    4

    United States District Court, D. Minnesota, Fourth Division.

    5
    March 23, 1992.
    6

    [1542] [1543] [1544] David W. McKenna, Tracey A. Sykes, Nancy J. Nelson and Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi, Minneapolis, Minn., for plaintiff.

    7

    Duane Eugene Arndt and Arndt & Benton, Minneapolis, Minn., for defendants.

    8
    ORDER
    9
    DOTY, District Judge.
    10

    This matter is before the court on plaintiff's motion to amend her complaint and defendants' motion for summary judgment. Based on a review of the file, record and proceedings herein, the court grants plaintiff's motion to amend, and grants in part and denies in part defendants' motion for summary judgment.

    11
    BACKGROUND
    12

    Plaintiff Nancy C. Schiele ("Schiele") brings the present action against defendants H. Charles Vogel, Jr. ("Vogel"), Harvey Vogel Manufacturing Co. and Charles Vogel Manufacturing Co., Inc. (referred to collectively as defendants). Schiele is a resident of Minnesota. Charles Vogel Manufacturing Co., Inc., is a Wisconsin corporation with its principal place of business in Prescott, Wisconsin (the Wisconsin facility). Harvey Vogel Manufacturing Co., a Minnesota corporation, has its principal place of business in Minnesota (the Minnesota facility). Vogel is chairman of the board of the Minnesota facility, and chairman of the board and president of the Wisconsin facility. He is also the sole shareholder of both companies. Vogel lives in Wisconsin, but commutes to work every day at the Minnesota facility.

    13

    In November 1987, Schiele was hired to work as a temporary accounting clerk at the Minnesota facility. At the end of December, she was transferred to the Wisconsin facility. Schiele continued to work at the Wisconsin facility until September 26, 1988, when she quit her job, claiming that the working conditions were intolerable because Vogel repeatedly subjected her to unwelcome physical contact and verbal communications of an intimidating, abusive [1545] and sexual nature.[1] Although on several occasions Schiele complained to her immediate supervisor, Wayne Hald, about Vogel's conduct, explaining that she found Vogel's language and conduct offensive, demeaning and unacceptable, she claims that Hald merely suggested that she look for another job. Despite her complaints to Hald, Schiele claims that the corporate defendants were either unwilling or unable to influence or control Vogel's behavior because Vogel let it be known that he would fire anyone who dared to complain about his conduct or the manner in which he ran his companies. (Vogel Dep. pp. 95-96, 100-01).

    14

    Schiele claims that she did not bring her objections directly to Vogel's attention until late September 1988, because she was afraid that he might retaliate against her or terminate her employment. When Schiele finally told Vogel that she objected to the manner in which he treated and spoke to her, she contends that he became extremely angry and told her that if she did not like his treatment, she could leave. She claims that his explosive reaction caused her to fear for her physical safety and she never returned to work after the confrontation. Schiele therefore contends that she was constructively discharged. Schiele further claims that as a result of defendants' abusive and hostile conduct, she has suffered and continues to suffer severe emotional and mental distress in addition to other damages.

    15

    Less than two days after Schiele left defendants' employ, Vogel called a meeting of her former co-workers. Schiele alleges that at that meeting, Vogel explained that Schiele had quit her job and he asked the eight or nine employees in attendance if any of them were her friends. After some of the employees raised their hands, Vogel told them that Schiele was "a thief due to the fact that she steals from the company." Vogel then asked employees again whether any of them were Schiele's friend and only one employee raised her hand.

    16

    Schiele finally alleges that when she was first employed at the Wisconsin facility, she held the position of office manager and was paid $22,000.00. In early 1988 she contends that she was relieved of those duties and replaced by a man who performed the same duties but was paid $16,000 more than Schiele had been paid.

    17

    Based on the foregoing, Schiele asserts claims of hostile environment sexual harassment pursuant to Title VII, claims of sexual harassment and discrimination under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, a claim of wage discrimination under Minn. Stat. § 181.67, and state law claims of defamation, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress.[2] Defendants move for summary judgment on all of Schiele's claims.

    18
    DISCUSSION
    19

    Rule 56(c) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides that summary judgment "shall be rendered forthwith if the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." This standard mirrors the standard for a directed verdict under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 50(a), which requires that the trial judge must direct a verdict if, under the governing law, there can be but one reasonable conclusion as to the verdict. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 250, 106 S.Ct. 2505, 2511, 91 L.Ed.2d 202 (1986). Stated in the negative, summary judgment will not lie if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party. Id. at 248, 106 S.Ct. at 2510. In order for the moving party to prevail, it must demonstrate to the court that "there is no genuine [1546] issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 325, 106 S.Ct. 2548, 2554, 91 L.Ed.2d 265 (1986); Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c). A fact is material only when its resolution affects the outcome of the case. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248, 106 S.Ct. at 2510. On a motion for summary judgment, all evidence and inferences are to be viewed in a light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Id. at 250, 106 S.Ct. at 2511. The nonmoving party, however, may not rest upon mere denials or allegations in the pleadings, but must set forth specific facts sufficient to raise a genuine issue for trial. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 324, 106 S.Ct. at 2553. Moreover, if a plaintiff cannot support each essential element of its claim, summary judgment must be granted because a complete failure of proof regarding an essential element necessarily renders all other facts immaterial. Id. at 322-23, 106 S.Ct. at 2552. With this standard at hand, the court will consider each of Schiele's claims.

    20
    I. Schiele's Title VII Claim
    21

    Defendants move for summary judgment on Schiele's sexual harassment claim under Title VII. Defendants first argue that her claim should be dismissed as untimely to the extent that it involves allegations concerning the Minnesota facility. On November 16, 1988, Schiele filed a discrimination charge with the Milwaukee District Office of the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). On November 17, 1988, the EEOC transmitted the charge to the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division, Department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations. It is undisputed that Schiele identified only Vogel and the Wisconsin facility as respondents in her charge. In her complaint, however, Schiele alleges that she began her employment with defendants at the Minnesota facility in November 1987 and was transferred to the Wisconsin facility on December 29, 1987. She also alleges three incidents of sexual harassment while she was employed at the Minnesota facility. None of those incidents, however, were set forth in her administrative charge and they all occurred more than 180 days before she filed her charge. Defendants thus contends that Schiele's claims against the Minnesota facility should be dismissed as untimely.

    22

    Schiele does not dispute the fact that her EEOC charge failed to identify the Minnesota facility as a respondent, but argues that her claim should be permitted because the Minnesota facility had both notice of her charge and an adequate opportunity to participate in conciliation. Under Title VII, an individual who believes that the act has been violated must file a charge with the EEOC within 180 days of the unlawful employment action.[3] A claimant who fails to name a party in the administrative charge generally may not sue that party under Title VII. See, e.g., Eggleston v. Chicago Journeymen Plumbers Local Union No. 130, U.A., 657 F.2d 890, 905 (7th Cir.1981) (citations omitted). That requirement, however, is not jurisdictional and an unnamed party may still be subject to suit if the:

    23
    unnamed party has been provided with adequate notice of the charge, under circumstances where the party has been given the opportunity to participate in conciliation proceedings aimed at voluntary compliance, the charge is sufficient to confer jurisdiction over that party.
    24

    Id. (citations omitted); Greenwood v. Ross, 778 F.2d 448, 450-51 (8th Cir.1985) ("A suit is not barred `where there is sufficient identity of interest between the respondent and the defendant to satisfy the intention of Title VII that the defendant have notice of the charge and the EEOC have an opportunity to attempt conciliation.'" quoting Romero v. Union Pac. R.R., 615 F.2d 1303, 1311 (10th Cir.1980)).

    25

    In Arenas v. Ladish Co., the district court permitted suit against plaintiff's supervisor [1547] under circumstances similar to those in the present case. 619 F.Supp. 1304, 1308 (E.D. Wis.1985), dismissed on other grounds, 1986 WL 617 (E.D.Wis. Jan. 22, 1986). Arenas filed a charge with the EEOC alleging sexual discrimination and harassment, but named only the company as the discriminating party, failing to name her supervisor as respondent. Id. at 1307. Following the analysis set forth in Eggleston, the court first determined that the supervisor had adequate notice of the charge because he was named as the perpetrator of several incidents of alleged discrimination and personally testified before the EEOC. Id. at 1308 (citing Eggleston, 657 F.2d at 905). The court further concluded that the supervisor had an adequate opportunity to conciliate because the employer had such an opportunity and the supervisor's "conciliation interests were commensurate with [his employer's]." Id. The court thus permitted Arenas to bring suit against her supervisor. Id.

    26

    Relying on Arenas, Schiele argues that she provided the Minnesota facility with adequate notice of her charge by naming Vogel, the corporation's chairman of the board and sole shareholder, as the perpetrator of the unlawful conduct. See Eggleston, 657 F.2d at 907 ("if a party has a close relationship with a named respondent ... and has actual notice of the EEOC charge [that party] `should not be heard to cry "foul" when later made a defendant'" (citations omitted)). She further alleges that the attorneys for the Minnesota facility are the same attorneys who represented both Vogel and the Wisconsin facility in the proceedings before the EEOC. Thus, she argues that the Minnesota facility, through the involvement of its attorneys and Vogel, as its sole stockholder and chairman of the board, had an adequate opportunity to conciliate with the EEOC. It is also undisputed that Schiele named Vogel and the Wisconsin facility in her charge and that both had an adequate opportunity to conciliate with the EEOC. Based on the foregoing, the court finds that Schiele raises a material fact dispute about whether the Minnesota facility received adequate notice or had an opportunity to conciliate.

    27

    Schiele also argues that the Minnesota and Wisconsin facilities should be considered a single employer for purposes of the charge filing provision of Title VII. Some courts permit two corporate entities to be deemed a single employer for purposes of permitting an unnamed defendant to be sued. Sedlacek v. Hach, 752 F.2d 333, 335-36 (8th Cir.1985); Escamilla v. Mosher Steel Co., 386 F.Supp. 101, 105 (S.D.Tex.1975) (parent corporation had or should have had notice of charge and opportunity to conciliate through its wholly owned subsidiary). In Sedlacek, the Eighth Circuit determined that a partnership and a corporation constituted a single employer for purposes of Title VII's notice and conciliation requirements because the two partners in the partnership were also the primary owners and managers of the corporation. 752 F.2d at 336. Thus, the Eighth Circuit concluded that naming the corporation in the charge was also sufficient to provide the partnership with notice because the two partners, as owners and managers of the corporation, actually received notice of the charge "and either knew or should have known that the interrelation between [the corporation and partnership] would cause the [partnership] to be implicated as well." Id.

    28

    Courts examine various factors to determine whether two companies constitute a single employer, including:

    29
    1. Interrelation of operations,
    30
    2. Common management,
    31
    3. Centralized control of labor relations, and
    32
    4. Common ownership or financial control.
    33

    EEOC v. Upjohn Corp., 445 F.Supp. 635, 638-39 (N.D.Ga.1977) (citing Radio Union v. Broadcast Serv., 380 U.S. 255, 85 S.Ct. 876, 13 L.Ed.2d 789 (1965)) (adopting NLRB's single employer standard in a Title VII action to analyze whether naming a subsidiary in a charge was sufficient to notify parent company).

    34

    Schiele contends that under that analysis, the two companies constitute a single employer because they have common ownership, [1548] financial control and management. Vogel, the alleged perpetrator of much of the sexual harassment, is the sole shareholder of both corporations and is also the president and chairman of the board of the Minnesota facility and chairman of the board and president of the Wisconsin facility. Moreover, Schiele was employed at both facilities and alleges an ongoing pattern of sexual harassment conducted at both facilities by the same individual, Charles Vogel.[4] Schiele also proffers evidence demonstrating the interrelationship of the operations and the centralized control of the employees at the two facilities.[5] The court thus determines that interrelationship between Vogel, the Minnesota facility and the Wisconsin facility may be sufficient to deem the two facilities a single employer for purposes of Schiele's Title VII claims. See Sedlacek, 752 F.2d at 335-36.

    35

    Based on the foregoing, the court concludes that there is a material fact dispute concerning whether the Minnesota and Wisconsin facilities are a single employer for purposes of the notice and conciliation requirements of Title VII and whether those requirements were fulfilled for purposes of Schiele's claims against the Minnesota facility. Thus, the court denies defendants' motion for summary judgment based on Schiele's failure to name the Minnesota facility in her administrative charge.

    36

    Defendants also contend that summary judgment must be granted on Schiele's claim as it concerns sexual harassment at the Minnesota facility because those alleged violations occurred more than 180 days before Schiele filed her charge. Defendants' argument, however, fails to acknowledge that Schiele alleges sexual harassment of a continuing nature. Under Title VII, if a plaintiff alleges an ongoing course of sexual harassment, the charge may encompass unlawful conduct outside the charge filing period as long as at least one incident of unlawful conduct occurred within the requisite period of time. See, e.g., Burns v. McGregor Elec. Indus., 955 F.2d 559, 562 (8th Cir.1992) (court could properly consider evidence of sexual harassment occurring more than 180 days before charge filing period where plaintiff alleged "a continuing course of harassment"); Waltman v. International Paper Co., 875 F.2d 468, 474-76 (5th Cir.1989) (reversing district court's determination that acts of sexual harassment, occurring more than 180 days before charge was filed, were untimely because plaintiff raised a material fact dispute concerning the existence of a continuing violation); Satz v. ITT Financial Corp., 619 F.2d 738, 743-44 (8th Cir.1980) (adopting continuing violation doctrine for sex discrimination action under Title VII). Schiele alleges a pattern and practice of ongoing sexual harassment consisting of similar violations by one individual, Vogel, that began at the Minnesota facility and then continued at the Wisconsin facility. She also alleges more than one incident of harassment occurring within the 180 day period. Thus, the court finds that Schiele raises a material fact dispute regarding the existence of a continuing violation and denies defendants' [1549] motion for summary judgment on the timeliness of the alleged violations at the Minnesota facility. See Burns, 559 F.2d at 562.

    37

    Defendants also move for summary judgment Schiele's Title VII claim based on their contention that Schiele's allegations concerning Vogel's "tough talk" and her subjective beliefs concerning his intent are insufficient to support a claim of constructive discharge. They further contend that Schiele fails to present a prima facie case of discrimination.

    38

    The court first rejects defendants' contention that Schiele fails to raise a material fact dispute concerning her claim of constructive discharge. Schiele contends that when she confronted Vogel about the alleged sexual harassment, his response was so explosive that she became afraid "for her physical safety" and never returned to work after the altercation. That confrontation alone may be sufficient to establish constructive discharge. See Glass v. IDS Fin. Serv., 778 F.Supp. 1029, 1055 (D.Minn. 1991) ("`A constructive discharge exists when an employer deliberately renders the employee's working conditions intolerable and thus forces him to quit his job.'" quoting Johnson v. Bunny Bread Co., 646 F.2d 1250, 1256 (8th Cir.1981) (quotation omitted)). Schiele, however, alleges constructive discharge based not only on that confrontation but also as the result of an ongoing practice of sexual harassment:

    39
    When an employer fails to protect an employee from sexual harassment, thereby forcing the employee to endure an offensive environment or to quit working, the harassment becomes a "condition of employment" prohibited by Title VII.
    40

    Zabkowicz v. West Bend Co., 589 F.Supp. 780, 783 (E.D.Wis.1984) (citations omitted).[6] Schiele proffers significant evidence of sexual harassment that is sufficiently egregious to support her assertion that her work conditions became such that a reasonable person would have found them abusive and intolerable. See Burns, 559 F.2d at 563, 564, (examining constructive discharge claim based on ongoing sexual harassment and holding that to establish a prima facie case, harassment must be severe enough so that a reasonable person would consider the environment to be abusive). Moreover, Vogel does not deny most of Schiele's allegations, but instead characterizes his alleged statements as "tough talk" that is not actionable because "other employees were exposed to the same verbal comments and did not leave their employment".[7] The court, however, rejects defendants' justifications and finds that Schiele proffers sufficient evidence to raise a material fact dispute concerning constructive discharge.

    41

    The court further finds that Schiele's claim is sufficient to establish a prima facie case of hostile environment sexual harassment under Title VII. A plaintiff establishes such a prima facie case by showing that:

    42
    1. she is a member of a protected group;
    43
    [1550] 2. she was subjected to unwelcome sexual harassment;
    44
    3. the harassment was based on sex;
    45
    4. the harassment affected a term, condition, or privilege of employment; and
    46
    5. the employer knew or should have known of the harassment and failed to take proper remedial action.
    47

    Burns, 559 F.2d at 564, (citing Staton v. Maries County, 868 F.2d 996, 998 (8th Cir. 1989)). Examining those elements, it is undisputed that Schiele is a member of a protected class. Defendants also fail to dispute Schiele's claim that the sexual harassment was unwelcome. Schiele also alleges sufficient evidence to support the inference that Vogel's alleged harassment was based on her sex. See Burns, 559 F.2d at 564 ("sexual behavior directed at a woman raises the inference that the harassment is based on her sex" (citations omitted)); cf. Hall v. Gus Constr., 842 F.2d 1010 (8th Cir.1988) (acts of harassment need not be sexual in nature, but may include "any harassment or other unequal treatment of an employee ... that would not occur but for the sex of the employee"). As noted above, Schiele also proffers sufficient evidence to raise a material fact dispute concerning whether the harassment was sufficiently severe to create an abusive work environment. Finally, Vogel, as the alleged perpetrator and Schiele's employer, clearly knew of his own actions and failed to take any corrective action. Id. at 564, ("employer clearly knew of harassment" where one of the alleged perpetrators was also the owner of the plant). The court thus concludes that Schiele's claim is sufficient to establish a prima facie case of hostile environment sexual harassment.

    48

    Based on the foregoing, the court denies defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's Title VII claim.

    49
    II. Schiele's State Law Claims
    50

    Schiele asserts a claim for invasion of privacy under Wis.Stat. § 895.50. She moves to amend her complaint to withdraw that claim pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 15(a). Defendants do not oppose that motion. Accordingly, the court grants her motion and dismisses that claim without prejudice.

    51

    Schiele also brings claims of sexual harassment, sexual discrimination and wage discrimination under Minnesota statute and common law claims of defamation, and intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. Schiele contends that Minnesota law should be applied to her claims and that defendants' motion for summary judgment must be denied because all of her claims raise material fact disputes under Minnesota law. Defendants, however, ask the court to apply Wisconsin law, and argue that Schiele's claims fail under Wisconsin law. The court will thus analyze the horizontal choice of law question before reaching the merits of Schiele's state law claims. Three questions must be answered when analyzing such questions:

    52

    1. Is there a conflict between the state laws that may be outcome determinative? Cargill, Inc. v. Products Eng'g Co., 627 F.Supp. 1492, 1495 (D.Minn.1986) (citing Milkovich v. Saari, 295 Minn. 155, 203 N.W.2d 408 (1973)).

    53

    2. Do the forum and alternative states both have sufficient contacts so that the application of either state's law satisfies constitutional due process? Allstate Ins. Co. v. Hague, 449 U.S. 302, 313-14, 101 S.Ct. 633, 640, 66 L.Ed.2d 521 (1981) (plurality).

    54

    3. Applying the choice of law analysis of the forum state, which state's law should apply? Klaxton Co. v. Stentor Elec. Motor Mfg. Co., 313 U.S. 487, 496, 61 S.Ct. 1020, 1021, 85 L.Ed. 1477 (1941) (a district court sitting in diversity should apply the choice of law analysis of the state in which is presides to determine the applicable law); Filz v. Mayo Found., 136 F.R.D. 165, 167 n. 3, 172-74 (D.Minn.1991) (discussing procedures federal courts follow when presented with both horizontal and vertical choice of law questions).

    55

    Turning to the first question, the parties do not dispute that an outcome determinative conflict of laws exist between [1551] Wisconsin and Minnesota law. Examining the relevant case law, the court determines that application of Wisconsin law forecloses Schiele's state law claims, while Minnesota law permits such claims.[8] The court thus concludes that an outcome determinative conflict exists.

    56

    Examining the constitutionality of the application of either Wisconsin or Minnesota law, the court determines that Wisconsin has sufficient contacts to justify the application of its law.[9] Although defendants argue that Minnesota has insufficient contacts to satisfy constitutional due process, the court finds that the following contacts are sufficient to permit application of Minnesota law:

    57

    1. Schiele is a Minnesota resident;

    2. One of the defendants, Harvey Vogel Manufacturing, is a Minnesota corporation with its principal place of business in Minnesota;

    3. Schiele was originally hired at the Minnesota facility and alleges that three incidents of sexual harassment occurred there;

    4. Charles Vogel is chairman of the board of the Minnesota facility;

    5. Charles Vogel conducts a substantial portion of his business through defendants' Minnesota facility;

    6. Charles Vogel commutes to work in Minnesota almost daily;

    7. Many of the administrative affairs of defendants' Wisconsin facility are handled through Minnesota and the Minnesota facility; and

    8. The two corporations share key employees, management and ownership.

    58

    See Hague, 449 U.S. at 313-20, 101 S.Ct. at 640-44 (upholding application of Minnesota law to accident where insurance company did business in Minnesota, decedent's widow became a Minnesota resident prior to litigation, and decedent was a resident of Wisconsin but commuted to Minnesota for work every day, although fatal crash occurred in Wisconsin and decedent was not going to work at that time); Counters v. Farmland Indus., 1988 WL 134800, at *2 (Minn.Ct.App.1988) (finding application of Minnesota discrimination law to employment dispute constitutional, even though employee worked for defendant in North Dakota at time dispute arose, because plaintiff was originally hired for a sales [1552] position in Minnesota and worked in Minnesota for five years); cf. Houle v. Stearns-Rogers Mfg. Co, 279 Minn. 345, 157 N.W.2d 362, 365 (1968) (Minnesota may assert jurisdiction over workers' compensation claim "on the sole ground that the contract of employment was entered into in the State of Minnesota"). The court thus concludes that it may apply either state's law without offending due process.

    59

    Finally, the court must apply Minnesota's choice of law analysis to determine which state's law to apply. Minnesota has adopted the choice-influencing considerations test as its choice of law method. See Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412 (explicitly adopting Leflar's method, citing Robert Leflar, Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y.U. L.Rev. 267, 279 (1966)).[10] Under that method, the court examines the following five factors:

    60
    a. Predictability of results;
    61
    b. Maintenance of interstate and international order;
    62
    c. Simplification of the judicial task;
    63
    d. Advancement of the forum's governmental interest; and
    64
    e. Application of the better rule of law.
    65

    Id. The court will examine the Milkovich factors to determine whether it should apply Minnesota or Wisconsin law.

    66
    A. Predictability of Results
    67

    Schiele argues that predictability of results has little relevance in the present case because this factor is more critical in the context of contractual and other consensual arrangements and Schiele asserts tort claims. See Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412 ("basically this test relates to consensual transactions where people should know in advance what law will govern their act"). Defendants contend, however, that the factor is relevant and favors application of Wisconsin law because Schiele's claims flow from an employment relationship grounded in Wisconsin. Assuming that this factor is relevant in the present context, the court nonetheless rejects defendants' claim that Wisconsin law offers a more predictable result. Schiele is a Minnesota resident who was originally hired and worked at the Minnesota facility. Vogel commutes to work at Minnesota facility virtually every day and his alleged harassment began at the Minnesota facility. Even while employed at the Wisconsin facility, Schiele proffers evidence demonstrating that she was subject to the control, supervision and direction of personnel from the Minneapolis facility, including Wayne Hald, comptroller of both corporations, Charles Reimer and Vogel. In addition, the decision to transfer Schiele to the Wisconsin facility was initially proposed by Hald and Jerry Hetland, two managerial employees of the Minnesota facility. Based on the foregoing, the court determines that defendants knew or should have known that Minnesota law may govern Schiele's claims. See Counters, 1988 WL 134800, at *2 (upholding application of Minnesota law under Milkovich because employer "should have known that an employment relationship originally entered into in Minnesota might be subject to Minnesota discrimination laws"). Thus, if this case is characterized as primarily a contractual rather than tortious claim, the court concludes predictability of results favors application of Minnesota law.

    68
    B. Maintenance of Interstate Order
    69

    Defendants contend that most of the significant contacts with Schiele's state law claims arise out of her employment relationship in Wisconsin and that applying Minnesota law would thus result in a breakdown in interstate order, impermissible forum shopping and extraterritorial application of Minnesota law in Wisconsin. Defendants argue that application of Wisconsin law would preserve interstate order, relying on Standal v. Armstrong Cork Co., 356 N.W.2d 380 (Minn.Ct.App.1984) to support their position. In Standal, the Minnesota Court of Appeals noted that "maintenance of interstate order requires only that the state whose laws are ultimately applied has a substantial connection [1553] with the facts and the particular issue." Id. at 381-82 (citing Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412). In the present case, both Minnesota and Wisconsin have substantial contacts with Schiele's state law claims. As previously noted, Schiele is a Minnesota resident, originally employed in Minnesota by a Minnesota company and supervised by employees at the Minnesota facility even after her transfer, who asserts claims involving the actions of the chairman of the board of the Minnesota company who commutes to work in Minnesota almost every day. Although Wisconsin also has significant contacts, it is an oversimplification to characterize Schiele's case as one involving only a Wisconsin employment relationship. The court thus rejects defendants' claim that the application of Minnesota law would "work an absolutely catastrophic result". Defendants also fail to articulate any particular way in which interstate order would be threatened by application of Minnesota law. Moreover, examining the interests of the two states, the court notes that both states have a policy of compensating employees for injuries suffered at the hands of their employers and that application of Minnesota law is foreseeable on the present facts.[11] See Counters, 1988 WL 134800, at *2 (Minnesota retains interest in employment relationship originally formed within its boundaries and application of its law is foreseeable in such circumstances). Concerns about forum shopping also lessens when a plaintiff is a resident of the state in which suit is brought. See Stenzel v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co., 379 N.W.2d 674, 676 (Minn.Ct.App. 1986) (citing Hague v. Allstate Ins. Co., 289 N.W.2d 43, 49 (Minn.1978), aff'd, 449 U.S. 302, 101 S.Ct. 633, 66 L.Ed.2d 521 (1981)). Based on the foregoing, the court finds that Minnesota courts would likely apply Minnesota law, and that such application is consistent with Minnesota state policy and does not unduly undermine Wisconsin's policies or threaten interstate order.

    70
    C. Simplification of the Judicial Task
    71

    Defendants argue that application of Wisconsin law would not affect the court's judicial task. Under Minnesota law, this factor:

    72
    "generally `poses no problem since the courts are fully capable of administering the law of another forum if called upon to do so.'"
    73

    Gimmestad v. Gimmestad, 451 N.W.2d 662, 666 (Minn.Ct.App.1990) (quoting Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412). The Gimmestad court further noted, however, that:

    74
    this factor is obviously advanced when a Minnesota court applies Minnesota law.
    75

    See id.[12] Applying this factor, the court concludes that on the present facts a Minnesota court would likely apply its own law for purposes of simplifying the judicial task.

    76
    D. Advance of the Forum's Governmental Interests
    77

    Consideration of the fourth and fifth factors carry the most weight in choice of law analysis. Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412. In evaluating the forum's governmental interests, the court should not apply "rules, which, however acceptable they may be in other states, are inconsistent with [Minnesota's] concept of fairness and equity." Hime v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co., 284 N.W.2d 829, 833 (Minn.1979). However:

    78
    [t]his interest will not manifest itself clearly if the out-of-state rule does not run contrary to some strong socio-legal policy of the forum, but it will become a major consideration if there is such a strong opposing local policy.
    79

    Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 414. Defendants contend that "only Wisconsin has an interest [1554] in regulating the economic and social consequences of sexual harassment occurring within its borders" and that "Minnesota has no government interest in regulating the relations of employers in the work place in Wisconsin." Such contentions, however, distort Schiele's situation. Wisconsin clearly has an interest in regulating employment relations for Wisconsin employers and provides various remedies for its employees. Those remedies, however, are not available to Schiele. The court thus finds that application of Wisconsin law will undermine Minnesota's interest, as a forum state, in ensuring that its citizens are compensated for injuries that they receive as a result of sexual harassment, defamation or intentional or negligent infliction of emotional distress. That interest is clearly demonstrated by Minnesota case law. See, e.g., Hubbard v. United Press Int'l, Inc., 330 N.W.2d 428 (Minn.1983) (intentional infliction of emotional distress); Continental Can Co. v. State, 297 N.W.2d 241 (Minn.1980) (sexual harassment); Karnes v. Milo Beauty & Barber Supply Co., 441 N.W.2d 565 (Minn.Ct.App.1989) (defamation); Bohdan v. Alltool Mfg., 411 N.W.2d 902 (Minn.Ct.App.1987) (defamation and negligent infliction of emotional distress). The Minnesota Human Rights Act, which provides remedies for sexual harassment, also reflects that interest, specifically defining an "employee" for purposes of the act as "an individual who is employed by an employer and who resides or works in this state." Minn.Stat. § 363.01, subd. 16. Minnesota also recognizes a governmental interest in regulating the conduct of nonresident employers doing business in this state and in protecting the rights of its residents even if they are employed in another state. See Counters, 1988 WL 134800, at *2. The court thus finds that application of Minnesota law protects the forum's interest while application of Wisconsin law will undermine that interest.

    80
    E. Application of the Better Rule of Law
    81

    Defendants argue that Wisconsin's statutory scheme constitutes the better law because "only Wisconsin has an interest in regulating the economic and social consequences of sexual harassment occurring within its borders." The court, however, rejects that argument, noting that Minnesota has a strong governmental interest in protecting its resident employees and substantial contacts with Schiele's claims. The court further notes that if Wisconsin law is applied, Schiele does not have a remedy for many of her claims, a situation that makes it probable that a Minnesota court would choose Minnesota law as the better law. Courts, however, are to evaluate the better law only when the other choice influencing considerations leave the choice of law uncertain. See, e.g., Myers v. Government Employees Ins., 302 Minn. 359, 225 N.W.2d 238, 244 (1974). Because the court determines that application of Wisconsin law will strongly undermine Minnesota's governmental interest, the court does not resolve this issue.[13]

    82

    Based on the foregoing, the court concludes that under the Milkovich analysis, a Minnesota court would apply Minnesota law to analyze defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's state law claims. The court will thus apply Minnesota law to analyze each claim in turn.

    83
    1. Schiele's Defamation Claim
    84

    Under Minnesota law, a defamation claim requires evidence of a false statement that is communicated to a third person which tends to harm the plaintiff's reputation or to lower the plaintiff in the estimation of the community. Stuempges v. Parke, Davis & Co., 297 N.W.2d 252, 255 (Minn.1980) (citing Restatement (Second) of Torts §§ 558-59 (1977)). In the present case, Vogel admits that he publicly accused Schiele of being a thief after she left his employ. Defendants, however, proffer no evidence to indicate that Schiele was a thief. Schiele proffers evidence indicating that his statements were false and recklessly or maliciously made for an improper motive on an improper occasion. The court [1555] thus finds that Schiele raises a material fact dispute concerning whether his statements were made with malice and for the purpose and effect of injuring Schiele. Based on the foregoing, the court denies defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's defamation claim.

    85
    2. Schiele's Infliction of Emotional Distress Claims
    86

    Schiele also asserts claims for intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, contending that Vogel's conduct was atrocious, passed the boundaries of decency and was utterly intolerable to a civilized community. See Hubbard, 330 N.W.2d at 437-39. To succeed on her intentional infliction claim, Schiele must show that defendants, by extreme and outrageous conduct, intentionally or recklessly caused her to suffer severe emotional distress. See Eklund v. Vincent Brass & Aluminum Co., 351 N.W.2d 371, 378-79 (Minn.Ct.App.1984). On her claim for negligent infliction of emotional distress, Schiele:

    87
    may recover damages for metal anguish or suffering for a direct invasion of [her] rights, such as defamation, malicious prosecution, or other willful, wanton or malicious conduct.
    88

    Bohdan v. Alltool Mfg. Co., 411 N.W.2d 902, 907 (Minn.Ct.App.1987) (finding exception to "zone of danger" requirement for negligent infliction claims); but see Meyer v. Tenvoorde Motor Co., 714 F.Supp. 991, 994-95 (D.Minn.1989) (declining to follow Bohdan and granting summary judgment on negligent infliction claim even though plaintiff asserted defamation claims that survived summary judgment motion). Examining the record, the court finds that Schiele raises a material fact dispute as to whether Vogel's conduct was "extreme and outrageous" and whether he engaged in such conduct either intentionally, recklessly or negligently. As previously discussed, Schiele's defamation claim also raises a material fact dispute. Bohdan, 411 N.W.2d at 907 (if plaintiff's "defamation action stands, [she] may assert negligent infliction of emotional distress" claim). Thus, the court denies defendants' motion for summary judgment on both the intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress claims.

    89
    3. Schiele's State Sexual Harassment and Discrimination Claims
    90

    Schiele also asserts sexual harassment and sexual discrimination claims under the Minnesota Human Rights Act.[14] In asserting such claims, a plaintiff has the option of either filing a charge with a "local commission" or the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, or proceeding directly into a state district court. Either option, however, must be pursued within one year. See Minn.Stat. § 363.06, subd. 3.[15] Schiele claims that she was constructively discharged as of September 26, 1988, and filed actions in Minnesota and Wisconsin state courts in July 1990. Schiele thus failed to bring a civil action within one year. It is also undisputed that Schiele failed to file a claim with either the Minnesota Department of Human Rights or any Minnesota agency. She relies instead on the claim she filed with the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division of the Department of Industry, Labor and Human Relations, arguing that the Wisconsin agency is a "local commission" for purposes of the Minnesota Human Rights Act. The statute defines "local commission" as:

    91
    "Local commission" means an agency of a city, county, or group of counties created pursuant to law, resolution of a county board, city charter, or municipal ordinance for the purpose of dealing with [1556] discrimination on the basis of ... sex....
    92

    Minn.Stat. § 363.01, subd. 23. Schiele argues that the statutory definition does not explicitly limit local commissions to only those agencies found in Minnesota and that the court should construe the term to encompass a Wisconsin agency. The Minnesota Supreme Court has recognized that an agency like the St. Paul Department of Human Rights is a "local commission" for purposes of the statute, Lewis v. Metropolitan Transit Comm'n, 320 N.W.2d 426, 429 (Minn.1982), however, the issue of whether an out-of-state agency can be considered a "local commission" is apparently one of first impression. Although the court acknowledges that the Minnesota Human Rights Act should be liberally construed, in the absence of any Minnesota cases construing the term "local commission" so broadly as to include agencies in other states, the court declines to interpret the statute in that manner. Moreover, other sections of the Human Rights Act that include the term "local commission", for example, provisions permitting the commissioner to refer matters to a local commission for a report and recommendation, see Minn.Stat. § 363.115, or permitting a local commission to refer a matter under its jurisdiction to the commissioner, see Minn. Stat. § 363.116, are inconsistent with Schiele's interpretation of a "local commission" as including an agency outside the borders of the State of Minnesota. Based on the foregoing, the court rejects Schiele's contention that the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division is a local commission for purposes of the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

    93

    As a result, the court concludes that Schiele failed to properly institute her claims within the one-year statute of limitations, Minn.Stat. § 363.06, subd. 3, and that her claims thus are barred. Turner v. IDS Financial Serv., 471 N.W.2d 105, 108 (Minn.1991). Accordingly, the court grants defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's claims brought under the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

    94
    4. Plaintiff's Wage Discrimination Claim
    95

    Schiele also asserts a claim for wage discrimination pursuant to Minn.Stat. § 181.67.[16] Minnesota courts apply the McDonnell Douglas framework to analyze such claims. See Kolstad v. Fairway Foods, Inc., 457 N.W.2d 728, 734 (Minn.Ct. App.1990). Plaintiffs may establish a prima facie case by showing that a male successor was paid more per year for substantially similar tasks, based on actual job requirements and performance. See id. (citing Danz v. Jones, 263 N.W.2d 395, 400 (Minn.1978) (quoting 29 C.F.R. 800.121)). Schiele alleges that after she was constructively discharged, defendants hired a man with substantially similar duties who was paid $38,000, which was $16,000 more than Schiele was paid. In his deposition, Vogel admitted that a man was hired to replace Schiele and that her replacement was paid at a much higher salary. Vogel contends, however, that Schiele's replacement had more responsibility.[17] Based on the record, the court determines that there is a material fact dispute regarding whether Schiele's replacement was performing tasks substantially similar to Schiele's, and thus denies defendants' motion for summary judgment on her wage discrimination claim. See id.

    96

    Based on the foregoing, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that:

    97

    [1557] 1. Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's Title VII claim is denied;

    98

    2. Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's defamation claim is denied;

    99

    3. Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress claims is denied;

    100

    4. Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's claims asserted under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, Minn.Stat. § 363.01 et seq., is granted;

    101

    5. Defendants' motion for summary judgment on Schiele's wage discrimination claim under Minn.Stat. § 181.67 is denied; and

    102

    6. Schiele's motion to amend her complaint to dismiss without prejudice her invasion of privacy claim, contained in Count VIII, is granted.

    103

    [1] For example, Schiele alleges that on one occasion Vogel delivered a note to Schiele which read "chocolate chip cookies are great but my favorite is Pussy — I don't mean cats either." (Schiele Dep. at 142.)

    104

    [2] Schiele also asserted a claim for invasion of privacy under Wis.Stat. § 895.50. However, she seeks permission to amend her complaint to delete that claim. As discussed infra, the court dismisses that claim without prejudice.

    105

    [3]Title VII specifically requires that:

    106

    A charge under this section shall be filed within one hundred and eighty days after the alleged unlawful employment practice occurred....

    107

    42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(e).

    108

    [4] Schiele also argues that the Minnesota facility is a proper party because the corporate veil should be pierced. Because the court denies defendants' motion for summary judgment on an alternative basis, the court does not address that issue.

    109

    [5]For example, while employed at the Wisconsin facility, Schiele was supervised by personnel from the Minnesota facility, including Vogel and Wayne Hald, the controller of both corporations. Schiele was interviewed and selected for her position at the Wisconsin facility by employees of the Minnesota facility. In addition, Schiele's transfer to the Wisconsin facility was originally proposed by two managers of the Minnesota facility, Hald and Jerry Hetland. During the time in which she worked for the Wisconsin facility, Schiele's medical insurance was provided by the Minnesota facility.

    110

    Vogel's deposition testimony also demonstrates that he completely controls the policy and business practices of both corporate defendants. Vogel maintains an office at the Minnesota facility where he performs tasks for both corporations. The operations of the two facilities are further interrelated because the Wisconsin facility pays the Minnesota facility to perform many accounting and recordkeeping functions and all three defendants are insured against property loss and liability through a single insurance contract.

    111

    [6]For purposes of Title VII, the EEOC defines sexual harassment as:

    112

    Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when ... (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

    113

    29 C.F.R. 1604.11(a).

    114

    [7] Defendants also attempt to justify the alleged sexual harassment by proffering evidence that Vogel's actions were prompted by his belief that Schiele was not performing her job up to defendants' expectation. Defendants attempt to argue that the evidence is sufficient under McDonnell Douglas Corp. v. Green, 411 U.S. 792, 802-04, 93 S.Ct. 1817, 1824-25, 36 L.Ed.2d 668 (1973) to shift the burden to Schiele show that the proffered reason for Vogel's actions was pretextual. The court, however, rejects that contention, noting that McDonnell Douglas and its progeny do not stand for the proposition that an employee's allegedly inadequate job performance provides a legitimate, nondiscriminatory motive for sexual harassment of the type alleged by Schiele. Cf. Jones v. Wesco Inv., 846 F.2d 1154, 1157 n. 6 (8th Cir.1988) (rejecting employer's attempts to justify similar sexual harassment by characterizing it as a "`natural interaction between genders' which must be permitted to prevent `the collapse of our commercial system or the end of the human race'").

    115

    [8]If Wisconsin law governs the adjudication of Schiele's claims of infliction of emotional distress, defamation and sexual harassment, Schiele contends that she will be denied relief for her alleged injuries because she did not pursue her remedies under the Wisconsin Workers' Compensation Act and the Wisconsin Fair Employment Practices Act. Wisconsin courts interpret the Wisconsin Workers' Compensation Act to preempt most common law claims asserted by employees:

    116

    Where such conditions exist the right to the recovery of compensation under this chapter shall be the exclusive remedy against the employer, any other employe of the same employer and the worker's compensation insurance carrier. This section does not limit the right of an employe to bring action against any coemploye for an assault intended to cause bodily harm, or against a coemploye for negligent operation of a motor vehicle not owned or leased by the employer, or against a coemploye of the same employer to the extent that there would be liability of a governmental unit to pay judgments against employees under a collective bargaining agreement or a local ordinance.

    117

    Wis.Stat. § 102.03(2). Thus, an employee may not bring an action for intentional infliction of emotional distress, e.g., Jenson v. Employers Mutual Casualty Co., 160 Wis.2d 263, 468 N.W.2d 1 (1991) (construing statute); or negligent infliction of emotional distress, e.g., Busse v. Gelco Express Corp., 678 F.Supp. 1398, 1400 (E.D.Wis. 1988) (holding that section 102.03(2) bars such claims); or defamation, e.g., Becker v. Automatic Garage Door Co., 156 Wis.2d 409, 456 N.W.2d 888, 891-92 (Wis.Ct.App.1990). As discussed infra, however, employees may assert such claims under Minnesota law.

    118

    The Wisconsin Fair Employment Act, Wis. Stat. §§ 111.31, et seq., would also preempt Schiele's statutory claims under Minn.Stat. § 181.67, wage discrimination, and Minn.Stat. § 363.03, sexual harassment and discrimination.

    119

    [9] Those contacts include: Charles Vogel Manufacturing Co. is a Wisconsin corporation with its principal place of business in Wisconsin; Charles Vogel is a resident of Wisconsin; many of the alleged violations occurred at the Wisconsin facility; Schiele filed a charge of discrimination with the EEOC in Wisconsin; and Schiele applied for unemployment benefits in Wisconsin. The parties do not dispute the determination that Wisconsin has sufficient contacts to justify application of its law.

    120

    [10] Wisconsin has also adopted the choice-influencing considerations test as its analysis. See Heath v. Zellmer, 151 N.W.2d 664, 672 (Wisc.1967).

    121

    [11] Although Wisconsin affords different remedies than Minnesota, both provide a method of compensating such employees.

    122

    [12]Wisconsin courts have also recognized:

    123

    a court's task is rarely simplified when the lawyers and judges must apply themselves to foreign rather than forum law.

    124

    Heath v. Zellmer, 35 Wis.2d 578, 151 N.W.2d 664, 673 (Wis.1967) ("forum law should continue to be a primary concern of the forum court").

    125

    [13] The court further notes that although differing significantly, both states provide remedies for employee injuries, and the court declines to label one a better law.

    126

    [14] Schiele bases her both her federal and state sexual harassment claims on the same conduct. Her claim of sexual discrimination is based on the alleged disparity in compensation paid to Schiele, and her replacement, Charles Reimer.

    127

    [15]That section specifically provides that:

    128

    Time for filing a claim. A claim of an unfair discriminatory practice must be brought as a civil action pursuant to section 363.14, subdivision 1, clause (a), filed in a charge with a local commission pursuant to section 363.116, or filed in a charge with the commissioner within one year after the occurrence of the practice.

    129

    Minn.Stat. § 363.06, subd. 3.

    130

    [16]That section specifically provides that:

    131

    No employer shall discriminate between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees at a rate less than the rate the employer pays to employees of the opposite sex for equal work on jobs the performance of which requires equal skill, effort, and responsibility, and which are performed under similar working conditions, except where such payment is made pursuant to a seniority system, a merit system, a system which measures earnings by quantity or quality of production, or a differential based on any other factor other than sex.

    132

    Minn.Stat. § 181.67, subd. 1.

    133

    [17] Defendants also contend that applying the Minnesota statute to a "Wisconsin" employment relationship violates the tenth amendment and notions of comity. As previously determined, however, Schiele is a Minnesota resident and her employment occurred both in Minnesota and Wisconsin. The court thus rejects defendants' contentions.

  • 4 Jepson v. General Cas. Co. of Wisconsin

    1
    513 N.W.2d 467 (1994)
    2
    Timothy W. JEPSON, Respondent,
    v.
    GENERAL CASUALTY COMPANY OF WISCONSIN, Petitioner, Appellant.
    3
    No. C7-92-1846.
    4

    Supreme Court of Minnesota.

    5
    March 25, 1994.
    6

    [468] Steven J. Cahill, Cahill & Marquart, PA, Moorhead, for appellant.

    7

    Robert Feder, Wold, Feder & Schimmelpfennig, P.C., Fargo, ND and Leslie A. Krisin, Mariscal, Weehe, McClnyrf & Friedlander, P.A., Phoenix, AZ, for respondent.

    8

    Heard, considered, and decided by the court en banc.

    9
    OPINION
    10
    PAGE, Justice.
    11

    General Casualty of Wisconsin seeks review of a court of appeals decision affirming the trial court's decision in a declaratory judgment action brought by Timothy Jepson. The trial court concluded that Jepson was entitled to Minnesota underinsured motorist benefits as a result of a 1983 auto accident. The court's conclusion was based on its determination that Minnesota, and not North Dakota, law applied to the anti-stacking provisions in the policy. The trial court also concluded, and the court of appeals affirmed, that under Minnesota law Jepson could stack the benefits on each of the seven vehicles insured under the policy. At the time of the accident, North Dakota law would enforce the anti-stacking provisions in the policy while Minnesota law would not. Our choice of law analysis mandates the application of North Dakota law.[1] We, therefore, vacate the judgment and remand to the trial court.

    12

    In March of 1983, Jepson purchased a general liability automobile insurance contract through the Dilworth Agency, Inc., Dilworth, Minnesota, providing coverage from General Casualty. Issued on April 7, 1983, the policy was effective from March 18, 1983, to March 18, 1984. The named insureds were Timothy and Deborah Jepson, National Muffler Shops, Inc., and National Muffler Warehouses, Inc. National Muffler Shops, Inc.'s address, at 72 North Second Street, Fargo, North Dakota 58102, was listed in the policy as the address for the named insureds. National Muffler Shops, Inc. and National Muffler Warehouses, Inc. are North Dakota corporations which do business in North Dakota.

    13

    The policy covered seven vehicles. Six of the vehicles were registered in North Dakota, and one was registered in Indiana. None of the vehicles were registered in Minnesota. All but two of the vehicles were registered in the name of either National Muffler Shops, Inc., or National Muffler Warehouses, Inc., the exception being a Corvette registered to Deborah Jepson at the National Muffler Shops' address and a GMC pick-up truck registered to Jepson's nephew at the same address.

    14

    The policy premium was calculated at North Dakota rates and paid by one of the corporations. Testimony indicated that it was General Casualty's practice to insure vehicles in the state where they were titled, that Minnesota insurance rates were substantially higher than North Dakota rates, and that, had the policy been written at higher rates, the insurance agent might have lost the sale.

    15

    The policy included a North Dakota Amendment of Cancellation Condition Endorsement and a North Dakota Basic Personal Injury Protection Endorsement. [469] Apart from these references, the policy does not indicate that it is a North Dakota policy. Jepson notes that the general policy change coding sheets reference state 22. The number 22 appears to be General Casualty's code for Minnesota.

    16

    Jepson testified that he specifically asked for underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage, and the policy purchased provided $100,000 per person/$300,000 per accident for underinsured and uninsured coverage. The policy prohibits stacking of the underinsured and uninsured benefits.

    17

    On December 18, 1983, Jepson and his wife were riding as passengers in a real estate agent's car in Phoenix, Arizona, when they were involved in a traffic accident. At the time, they were looking to purchase a home in Phoenix for reasons related to Jepson's health. The person who caused the accident had insurance with a liability limit of $250,000. Jepson settled with that individual for the policy limits. Jepson also received $100,000 from the coverage on the car in which he was riding.

    18

    Jepson applied for and received no-fault benefits from General Casualty under the North Dakota no-fault law. A dispute arose between Jepson and General Casualty regarding medical expenses payable under the personal injury protection coverage of the policy. As a result of that dispute, Jepson brought suit against General Casualty in North Dakota, claiming entitlement to North Dakota personal injury protection benefits. A summons and complaint dated September 24, 1985, were served on General Casualty. The lawsuit was settled prior to being filed in the district court. Jepson was represented in that matter by the same counsel representing him in this action.

    19

    In June of 1991, Jepson brought a declaratory judgment action in Minnesota, seeking underinsured motorist benefits under the General Casualty policy, and insisting that those benefits be stacked. The declaratory judgment action went forward, and the trial court concluded that Minnesota law should be applied; the trial court further concluded that under Minnesota law Jepson would be allowed to stack benefits on all seven vehicles. General Casualty moved for amended findings, which motion was denied, and then General Casualty appealed to the court of appeals on four issues: adequacy of notice, whether Jepson had met his burden of production, choice of law, and the number of vehicles to be stacked. The court of appeals affirmed the trial court's decision. General Casualty presents two issues[2] for our review: (1) whether Minnesota law or North Dakota law governs the resolution of this underinsured motorist coverage dispute; and (2) if Minnesota law applies, how many of the insured vehicles may be stacked for purposes of underinsured motorist coverage. We reverse and remand.

    20

    In analyzing the choice of law issue, the first consideration is whether the choice of one state's law over another's creates an actual conflict. Hague v. Allstate Insurance Co., 289 N.W.2d 43, 46-47 (Minn.1979) (citing Myers v. Government Employees Insurance Co., 302 Minn. 359, 225 N.W.2d 238, 241 (1974)), affirmed 449 U.S. 302, 101 S.Ct. 633, 66 L.Ed.2d 521 (1981). Here, North Dakota would enforce the anti-stacking provision in the policy, while under the law in effect at the time of the accident Minnesota would not. St. Paul Mercury Insurance Company v. Andrews, 321 N.W.2d 483, 489 (N.D.1982); Wasche v. Milbank Mutual Insurance Company, 268 N.W.2d 913, 919 (Minn.1978). Thus, an actual conflict exists.

    21

    Next, we must consider whether the law of both states can be constitutionally applied. The Supreme Court set out the test for constitutionality in Hague: "[F]or a State's substantive law to be selected in a constitutionally permissible manner, that State must have a significant contact or significant aggregation of contacts, creating state interests, such that choice of its law is neither arbitrary nor fundamentally unfair." Allstate [470] Insurance Co. v. Hague, 449 U.S. 302, 312-13, 101 S.Ct. 633, 640, 66 L.Ed.2d 521 (1981).

    22

    Both Minnesota and North Dakota have sufficient contacts such that the law of either state could be constitutionally applied. Contacts with Minnesota include Jepson residing in Minnesota at the time the insurance contract was made and at the time of the accident, Jepson's purchase of the policy through a Minnesota agency, and the regular use of at least two of the covered vehicles in Minnesota. North Dakota contacts include all of the covered vehicles but one being registered in North Dakota,[3] the named insured's addresses being in North Dakota, and two of the named insureds were North Dakota corporations, located in North Dakota, and not registered or licensed to do business in Minnesota. Finally, one of those corporations paid the premiums on the insurance policy.

    23

    Having concluded that there is a conflict between Minnesota and North Dakota law and that either may be constitutionally applied, we next look to the five choice influencing factors set out in Milkovich v. Saari, 295 Minn. 155, 203 N.W.2d 408 (1973). They are: (1) predictability of result; (2) maintenance of interstate and international order; (3) simplification of the judicial task; (4) advancement of the forum's governmental interest; and (5) application of the better rule of law. Milkovich, 203 N.W.2d at 412. These five factors were put forward by Professor Leflar as a way of laying bare the reasons for choosing to apply one state's law over another. See Robert A. Leflar, Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y.U.L.Rev. 267, 282 (1966); Robert A. Leflar, Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations, 54 Calif.L.Rev. 1584, 1586-88 (1966). These factors were not intended to spawn the evolution of set mechanical rules but instead to prompt courts to carefully and critically consider each new fact situation and explain in a straight-forward manner their choice of law. See Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law at 281-82; Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations at 1598. The lower courts need to wrestle with each situation anew. While prior opinions may be helpful to a court's deliberations, the court's obligation is to be true to the method rather than to seek superficial factual analogies between cases and import wholesale the choice of law analysis contained therein.

    24

    The trial court determined that the first factor, predictability, was not of great importance and the court of appeals agreed. General Casualty, however, contends that predictability is essential to insurance contracts and argues it reasonably expected its obligations to be governed by the law of the state where the contract was issued and where the insured property was generally located — North Dakota. The Jepsons argue that predictability of result favors Minnesota law because the policy was sold through a Minnesota agency, the Jepsons reside in Minnesota, and the policy covered at least two vehicles that were regularly driven from Minnesota residences to Jepson's place of business in Fargo.

    25

    This case involves the coverage an insurance policy provides for injuries suffered in an accident, and so has aspects of both contract and tort. Predictability of result as it relates to the tort aspect of a case is not of great importance in situations such as the one presented here because of the unplanned nature of automobile accidents. Hime v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Company, 284 N.W.2d 829, 833 (1979); Hague, 289 N.W.2d 43, 48 (1978). Predictability of result is of value in analyzing the contract aspects of a case. While where an accident occurs is unimportant, the obligations the insurer has to the insured at that time are important. The heart of the bargain between the insurer and the insured is the coverage the insured purchased. The parties enter into the insurance contract with the expectation that, should a dispute arise, the legal system will endeavor to give each side the benefit of their bargain. To the extent the choice of law in this case contributes to giving the parties the benefit of their bargain, it enhances the predictability of the parties' contractual arrangements.

    26

    [471] Although the accident occurred in Arizona, nothing was planned or done by either of the parties with regard to the insurance contract that was in any way directed to that state. In considering the bargain between Jepson and General Casualty, we note it was based on a number of factors that could only reflect a mutual expectation that they had negotiated a North Dakota insurance contract. The insurance policy covered named insureds at a North Dakota address and North Dakota registered and titled vehicles. The premium charges for the coverage were calculated at North Dakota rates. These circumstances suggest what the parties' reasonable expectations should have been at the time of contracting. Perhaps the parties might have predicted that, had Jepson been injured in one of the vehicles in Minnesota, Minnesota law might be applied. It is unlikely the parties would have predicted Minnesota law would apply in such circumstances as occurred here, that is, where Jepson was injured while riding in another person's vehicle in a state other than Minnesota or North Dakota.

    27

    Differences among the states in their laws and in their choice of law methods make predicting what law will apply to a case an uncertain exercise. It is, however, desirable for the courts of different states to reach similar conclusions on the choice of law in a given dispute. We think it unlikely most other courts would apply Minnesota law on the facts before us. The factor of preserving the parties' justified expectations and enhancing the predictability of what state's law will govern in a contractual dispute points away from the application of Minnesota law.

    28

    In discussing the second factor, the maintenance of interstate order, we are primarily concerned with whether the application of Minnesota law would manifest disrespect for North Dakota's sovereignty or impede the interstate movement of people and goods. An aspect of this concern is to maintain a coherent legal system in which the courts of different states strive to sustain, rather than subvert, each other's interests in areas where their own interests are less strong. Robert A. Leflar, Choice-Influencing Considerations in Conflicts Law, 41 N.Y.U.L.Rev. 267, 285-87 (1966). By approaching choice of law questions with these considerations in mind, the opportunities for forum shopping may be kept within reasonable bounds.

    29

    The trial court found that Minnesota had sufficient contacts with the case for this factor to weigh in favor of applying Minnesota law and the court of appeals concurred. General Casualty argues that the state whose law is ultimately applied should have the most significant contacts with the facts at issue. Minnesota, according to General Casualty, has minimal contacts with the facts, while both North Dakota and Arizona have far more significant contacts. For his part, Jepson argues that Minnesota has the most significant contacts and that it is irrelevant that the vehicles were registered in North Dakota or that their titles were held by North Dakota corporations. In support of this proposition, Jepson notes that in Amco Insurance Company v. Lang, 420 N.W.2d 895, 897 (Minn.1988), we observed that "it has been the rule in Minnesota that first party coverages follow the person, not the vehicle."

    30

    If the law of North Dakota promised Jepson a greater recovery than Minnesota, we doubt very much that he would be litigating this coverage dispute in our courts. People who purposefully seek advantages offered by another state ought not be allowed to avoid the burdens associated with their choice. We find evidence that Jepson is forum shopping in bringing this suit in our state's courts because he commenced, although settling prior to filing suit, litigation in North Dakota to secure no fault benefits payable under North Dakota law.[4] Minnesota does not have an interest in encouraging forum shopping, particularly where we would be sending a message to those people living on our borders to take advantage of the benefits our neighboring states offer in terms of lower insurance rates, lower vehicle registration fees, and sales taxes, and then, if they are injured, [472] take advantage of Minnesota's greater willingness to compensate tort victims. Minnesota does not have an interest in encouraging that conduct.

    31

    Further, Jepson's reliance on Amco, 420 N.W.2d 895 is misplaced. The analysis in that case has no bearing on the choice of law issue confronting us here. First, Amco was not a choice of law case. Second, Jepson unwarrantedly attempts to extend what we did say in Amco. It is true that in Amco we held that "in Minnesota * * * first party coverages follow the person, not the vehicle." Amco, 420 N.W.2d at 897. Illogically, Jepson contends this proposition means not only that coverage follows the person, but that the policy automatically becomes a Minnesota policy because one of the named insureds is a Minnesota resident. That is simply not true.

    32

    Unlike the trial court and court of appeals, we find that the maintenance of interstate order weighs in favor of applying North Dakota law. North Dakota has the authority to regulate the terms of insurance for vehicles licensed and titled in that state. We interfere with the sovereignty of a sister state when we make our law available for people who seek Minnesota benefits while burdening the North Dakota insurance rate base and regulatory system.

    33

    The third factor, simplification of the judicial task, is not a significant factor in this case because the law of either state could be applied without difficulty.

    34

    The fourth choice influencing factor is which choice of law most advances a significant interest of the forum. General Casualty argues that Minnesota has no legitimate interest in applying its law, especially since Jepson no longer resides in Minnesota. Jepson believes that because he was a domiciliary of Minnesota at the time of the accident, and more generally because he is a tort victim and Minnesota has a policy of compensating tort victims, it is in Minnesota's interest to apply its law.

    35

    Minnesota places great value in compensating tort victims. We have even refused to apply our law when the law of another state would better serve to compensate a tort victim. Bigelow v. Halloran, 313 N.W.2d 10, 12-13 (Minn.1981) (noting that Minnesota and Iowa both had significant contacts with the subject of litigation, but choosing Iowa law because it was the "better rule of law"). But, however significant Minnesota's interest in the compensation of tort victims, we have other interests which in situations like this one are in conflict with the value we place on victim compensation. For example, we also believe that people should get the benefit of the contracts they enter into, nothing less and nothing more. Were the only choice-influencing consideration in this case our governmental interest, we might side with Jepson. On the facts of this case, however, our choice is influenced more by our analyses of predictability and maintenance of the interstate order than it is by our governmental interest in compensating a tort victim.

    36

    The final choice influencing factor to consider is whether, in an objective sense, North Dakota or Minnesota has the better rule of law. At the time of Jepson's accident, Minnesota law would not enforce the anti-stacking provision in the insurance policy while North Dakota would. In 1985, the legislature amended the law to prohibit stacking. Act of June 27, 1985, First Special Session, ch. 10, § 68, codified at Minn.Stat. § 65B.49, subd. 3a(6) (1992). General Casualty claims that to allow stacking cannot be considered the better rule of law precisely because Minnesota has banned stacking. As authority for this point, General Casualty relies on Stenzel v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company, 379 N.W.2d 674 (Minn.App.1986), where the court of appeals reasoned that the 1985 amendment prohibiting stacking should be regarded as the better rule of law: "[n]ow that the legislature has spoken, we must follow its assessment of the `better rule.'" Stenzel at 676. Jepson counters that he is entitled to the benefit of the law that existed at the time of his injury. He relies on Wille v. Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company, 432 N.W.2d 784 (Minn.App.1988), where the court of appeals concluded the 1985 amendment prohibiting stacking did not require it to enforce anti-stacking provisions that violated Minnesota policy when the insurance contract was made. Wille at 787-88.

    37

    [473] The trial court found, and the court of appeals apparently agreed, that Minnesota's treatment of stacking at the time of the accident is the better rule of law. On our reading of the cases and briefs, however, neither Stenzel, nor Wille, nor the parties offer a compelling explanation of exactly why stacking or anti-stacking is a better rule. Stenzel wrongly asserts that, because the legislature prohibited stacking, we must find it to be the better rule of law. Stenzel, 379 N.W.2d at 676. If that were true, forum law would always be the better law and this step in our choice of law analysis would be meaningless. Wille simply states that because stacking provides greater compensation, it is a better rule. Wille, 432 N.W.2d at 786.

    38

    Leflar intended the better rule of law to be the rule that made "good socio-economic sense for the time when the court speaks." Robert A. Leflar, Conflicts Law: More on Choice-Influencing Considerations, 54 Calif.L.Rev. 1584, 1588 (1966). We disagree with the views expressed in Stenzel and Wille, as well as by the parties, as to which is the better rule of law. From our present day vantage point, neither the law Minnesota had then, nor the law we have now, is clearly better. Sometimes different laws are neither better nor worse in an objective way, just different. Because we do not find either stacking or anti-stacking to be a better rule in the sense Leflar intended, this consideration does not influence our choice of law.

    39

    We hold that North Dakota law applies to Jepson's stacking claim. So deciding, the issue of how many vehicles may be stacked under the policy is moot.

    40

    Reversed and remanded to the trial court.

    41

    [1] Because we find that North Dakota law applies, we do not reach the issue of which vehicles could be stacked under the policy.

    42

    [2] General Casualty's brief argued that an appellate court need not defer to a trial court's findings of fact that derived from documentary, as opposed to testamentary, evidence under Minn. R.Civ.P. 52.01. General Casualty is wrong. Minn.R.Civ.P. 52.01 (1994) explicitly permits an appellate court to overrule a trial judge's findings of fact only when those findings are clearly erroneous, regardless of whether the findings are based on documentary or testamentary evidence.

    43

    [3] One covered vehicle was registered and kept in Indiana.

    44

    [4] To be eligible for the no fault benefits Jepson sought from General Casualty, North Dakota law requires an insured's vehicles be registered or principally garaged in North Dakota. N.D.C.C. §§ 26.1-41-02 (1987); 39-05-02.2 (1989).

  • 5 §1.4.1.1 General jurisdiction limitations on better law

    • 5.1 Daimler AG v. Bauman

      134 S.Ct. 746 (2014)

      DAIMLER AG, Petitioner
      v.
      Barbara BAUMAN et al.

      No. 11-965.

      Supreme Court of United States.

      Argued October 15, 2013.
      Decided January 14, 2014.

      [750] Thomas H. Dupree, Jr., Washington, DC, for Petitioner.

      Edwin S. Kneedler, Washington, DC, for the United States as amicus curiae, by special leave of the Court, supporting the petitioner.

      Kevin Russell, Washington, DC, for Respondents.

      Justs N. Karlsons, Matthew J. Kemner, David M. Rice, Troy M. Yoshino, Carroll, Burdick & McDonough LLP, San Francisco, Theodore B. Olson, Daniel W. Nelson, Thomas H. Dupree, Jr., Counsel of Record, Amir C. Tayrani, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, Washington, DC, Counsel for Petitioner.

      Kevin K. Russell, Goldstein & Russell, P.C., Counsel of Record, Washington, DC, Pamela S. Karlan, Jeffrey L. Fisher, Stanford Law School, Supreme Court, Litigation Clinic, Stanford, Terrence P. Collingsworth, Christian Levesque, Conrad & Scherer, LLP, Washington, DC, for Respondents.

      Justice GINSBURG delivered the opinion of the Court.

      This case concerns the authority of a court in the United States to entertain a claim brought by foreign plaintiffs against a foreign defendant based on events occurring entirely outside the United States. The litigation commenced in 2004, when twenty-two Argentinian residents[1] filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California against DaimlerChrysler Aktiengesellschaft [751] (Daimler),[2] a German public stock company, headquartered in Stuttgart, that manufactures Mercedes-Benz vehicles in Germany. The complaint alleged that during Argentina's 1976-1983 "Dirty War," Daimler's Argentinian subsidiary, Mercedes-Benz Argentina (MB Argentina) collaborated with state security forces to kidnap, detain, torture, and kill certain MB Argentina workers, among them, plaintiffs or persons closely related to plaintiffs. Damages for the alleged human-rights violations were sought from Daimler under the laws of the United States, California, and Argentina. Jurisdiction over the lawsuit was predicated on the California contacts of Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (MBUSA), a subsidiary of Daimler incorporated in Delaware with its principal place of business in New Jersey. MBUSA distributes Daimler-manufactured vehicles to independent dealerships throughout the United States, including California.

      The question presented is whether the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment precludes the District Court from exercising jurisdiction over Daimler in this case, given the absence of any California connection to the atrocities, perpetrators, or victims described in the complaint. Plaintiffs invoked the court's general or all-purpose jurisdiction. California, they urge, is a place where Daimler may be sued on any and all claims against it, wherever in the world the claims may arise. For example, as plaintiffs' counsel affirmed, under the proffered jurisdictional theory, if a Daimler-manufactured vehicle overturned in Poland, injuring a Polish driver and passenger, the injured parties could maintain a design defect suit in California. See Tr. of Oral Arg. 28-29. Exercises of personal jurisdiction so exorbitant, we hold, are barred by due process constraints on the assertion of adjudicatory authority.

      In Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. ___, 131 S.Ct. 2846, 180 L.Ed.2d 796 (2011), we addressed the distinction between general or all-purpose jurisdiction, and specific or conduct-linked jurisdiction. As to the former, we held that a court may assert jurisdiction over a foreign corporation "to hear any and all claims against [it]" only when the corporation's affiliations with the State in which suit is brought are so constant and pervasive "as to render [it] essentially at home in the forum State." Id., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2851. Instructed by Goodyear, we conclude Daimler is not "at home" in California, and cannot be sued there for injuries plaintiffs attribute to MB Argentina's conduct in Argentina.

      I

      In 2004, plaintiffs (respondents here) filed suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, alleging that MB Argentina collaborated with Argentinian state security forces to kidnap, detain, torture, and kill plaintiffs and their relatives during the military dictatorship in place there from 1976 through 1983, a period known as Argentina's "Dirty War." Based on those allegations, plaintiffs asserted claims under the Alien Tort Statute, 28 U.S.C. § 1350, and the Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991, 106 Stat. 73, note following 28 U.S.C. § 1350, as well as claims for wrongful death and intentional infliction of emotional distress under the laws of California and Argentina. The incidents recounted in the [752] complaint center on MB Argentina's plant in Gonzalez Catan, Argentina; no part of MB Argentina's alleged collaboration with Argentinian authorities took place in California or anywhere else in the United States.

      Plaintiffs' operative complaint names only one corporate defendant: Daimler, the petitioner here. Plaintiffs seek to hold Daimler vicariously liable for MB Argentina's alleged malfeasance. Daimler is a German Aktiengesellschaft (public stock company) that manufactures Mercedes-Benz vehicles in Germany and has its headquarters in Stuttgart. At times relevant to this case, MB Argentina was a subsidiary wholly owned by Daimler's predecessor in interest.

      Daimler moved to dismiss the action for want of personal jurisdiction. Opposing the motion, plaintiffs submitted declarations and exhibits purporting to demonstrate the presence of Daimler itself in California. Alternatively, plaintiffs maintained that jurisdiction over Daimler could be founded on the California contacts of MBUSA, a distinct corporate entity that, according to plaintiffs, should be treated as Daimler's agent for jurisdictional purposes.

      MBUSA, an indirect subsidiary of Daimler, is a Delaware limited liability corporation.[3] MBUSA serves as Daimler's exclusive importer and distributor in the United States, purchasing Mercedes-Benz automobiles from Daimler in Germany, then importing those vehicles, and ultimately distributing them to independent dealerships located throughout the Nation. Although MBUSA's principal place of business is in New Jersey, MBUSA has multiple California-based facilities, including a regional office in Costa Mesa, a Vehicle Preparation Center in Carson, and a Classic Center in Irvine. According to the record developed below, MBUSA is the largest supplier of luxury vehicles to the California market. In particular, over 10% of all sales of new vehicles in the United States take place in California, and MBUSA's California sales account for 2.4% of Daimler's worldwide sales.

      The relationship between Daimler and MBUSA is delineated in a General Distributor Agreement, which sets forth requirements for MBUSA's distribution of Mercedes-Benz vehicles in the United States. That agreement established MBUSA as an "independent contracto[r]" that "buy[s] and sell[s] [vehicles] ... as an independent business for [its] own account." App. 179a. The agreement "does not make [MBUSA] ... a general or special agent, partner, joint venturer or employee of DAIMLERCHRYSLER or any Daimler-Chrysler Group Company"; MBUSA "ha[s] no authority to make binding obligations for or act on behalf of DAIMLERCHRYSLER or any DaimlerChrysler Group Company." Ibid.

      After allowing jurisdictional discovery on plaintiffs' agency allegations, the District Court granted Daimler's motion to dismiss. Daimler's own affiliations with California, the court first determined, were insufficient to support the exercise of all-purpose jurisdiction over the corporation. Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler AG, No. C-04-00194 RMW (N.D.Cal., Nov. 22, 2005), App. to Pet. for Cert. 111a-112a, 2005 WL 3157472, *9-*10. Next, the court declined to attribute MBUSA's California contacts to Daimler on an agency theory, concluding that plaintiffs failed to demonstrate that MBUSA acted as Daimler's agent. Id., at 117a, 133a, 2005 WL 3157472, *12, *19; Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler AG, No. [753] C-04-00194 RMW (N.D.Cal., Feb. 12, 2007), App. to Pet. for Cert. 83a-85a, 2007 WL 486389, *2.

      The Ninth Circuit at first affirmed the District Court's judgment. Addressing solely the question of agency, the Court of Appeals held that plaintiffs had not shown the existence of an agency relationship of the kind that might warrant attribution of MBUSA's contacts to Daimler. Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., 579 F.3d 1088, 1096-1097 (2009). Judge Reinhardt dissented. In his view, the agency test was satisfied and considerations of "reasonableness" did not bar the exercise of jurisdiction. Id., at 1098-1106. Granting plaintiffs' petition for rehearing, the panel withdrew its initial opinion and replaced it with one authored by Judge Reinhardt, which elaborated on reasoning he initially expressed in dissent. Bauman v. Daimler-Chrysler Corp., 644 F.3d 909 (C.A.9 2011).

      Daimler petitioned for rehearing and rehearing en banc, urging that the exercise of personal jurisdiction over Daimler could not be reconciled with this Court's decision in Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. ___, 131 S.Ct. 2846, 180 L.Ed.2d 796 (2011). Over the dissent of eight judges, the Ninth Circuit denied Daimler's petition. See Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., 676 F.3d 774 (2011) (O'Scannlain, J., dissenting from denial of rehearing en banc).

      We granted certiorari to decide whether, consistent with the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, Daimler is amenable to suit in California courts for claims involving only foreign plaintiffs and conduct occurring entirely abroad. 569 U.S. ___, 133 S.Ct. 1995, 185 L.Ed.2d 865 (2013).

      II

      Federal courts ordinarily follow state law in determining the bounds of their jurisdiction over persons. See Fed. Rule Civ. Proc. 4(k)(1)(A) (service of process is effective to establish personal jurisdiction over a defendant "who is subject to the jurisdiction of a court of general jurisdiction in the state where the district court is located"). Under California's long-arm statute, California state courts may exercise personal jurisdiction "on any basis not inconsistent with the Constitution of this state or of the United States." Cal. Civ. Proc. Code Ann. § 410.10 (West 2004). California's long-arm statute allows the exercise of personal jurisdiction to the full extent permissible under the U.S. Constitution. We therefore inquire whether the Ninth Circuit's holding comports with the limits imposed by federal due process. See, e.g., Burger King Corp. v. Rudzewicz, 471 U.S. 462, 464, 105 S.Ct. 2174, 85 L.Ed.2d 528 (1985).

      III

      In Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714, 24 L.Ed. 565 (1878), decided shortly after the enactment of the Fourteenth Amendment, the Court held that a tribunal's jurisdiction over persons reaches no farther than the geographic bounds of the forum. See id., at 720 ("The authority of every tribunal is necessarily restricted by the territorial limits of the State in which it is established."). See also Shaffer v. Heitner, 433 U.S. 186, 197, 97 S.Ct. 2569, 53 L.Ed.2d 683 (1977) (Under Pennoyer, "any attempt `directly' to assert extraterritorial jurisdiction over persons or property would offend sister States and exceed the inherent limits of the State's power."). In time, however, that strict territorial approach yielded to a less rigid understanding, spurred by "changes in the technology of transportation and communication, and the tremendous growth of interstate business activity." Burnham v. Superior Court of Cal., [754] County of Marin, 495 U.S. 604, 617, 110 S.Ct. 2105, 109 L.Ed.2d 631 (1990) (opinion of SCALIA, J.).

      "The canonical opinion in this area remains International Shoe [Co. v. Washington], 326 U.S. 310 [66 S.Ct. 154, 90 L.Ed. 95 (1945)], in which we held that a State may authorize its courts to exercise personal jurisdiction over an out-of-state defendant if the defendant has `certain minimum contacts with [the State] such that the maintenance of the suit does not offend "traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice."'" Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2853 (quoting International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 316, 66 S.Ct. 154). Following International Shoe, "the relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the litigation, rather than the mutually exclusive sovereignty of the States on which the rules of Pennoyer rest, became the central concern of the inquiry into personal jurisdiction." Shaffer, 433 U.S., at 204, 97 S.Ct. 2569.

      International Shoe's conception of "fair play and substantial justice" presaged the development of two categories of personal jurisdiction. The first category is represented by International Shoe itself, a case in which the in-state activities of the corporate defendant "ha[d] not only been continuous and systematic, but also g[a]ve rise to the liabilities sued on." 326 U.S., at 317, 66 S.Ct. 154.[4] International Shoe recognized, as well, that "the commission of some single or occasional acts of the corporate agent in a state" may sometimes be enough to subject the corporation to jurisdiction in that State's tribunals with respect to suits relating to that in-state activity. Id., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154. Adjudicatory authority of this order, in which the suit "aris[es] out of or relate[s] to the defendant's contacts with the forum," Helicopteros Nacionales de Colombia, S.A. v. Hall, 466 U.S. 408, 414, n. 8, 104 S.Ct. 1868, 80 L.Ed.2d 404 (1984), is today called "specific jurisdiction." See Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2853 (citing von Mehren & Trautman, Jurisdiction to Adjudicate: A Suggested Analysis, 79 Harv. L.Rev. 1121, 1144-1163 (1966) (hereinafter von Mehren & Trautman)).

      International Shoe distinguished between, on the one hand, exercises of specific jurisdiction, as just described, and on the other, situations where a foreign corporation's "continuous corporate operations within a state [are] so substantial and of such a nature as to justify suit against it on causes of action arising from dealings entirely distinct from those activities." 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154. As we have since explained, "[a] court may assert general jurisdiction over foreign (sister-state or foreign-country) corporations to hear any and all claims against them when their affiliations with the State are so `continuous and systematic' as to render them essentially at home in the forum State." Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2851; see id., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2853-2854; Helicopteros, 466 U.S., at 414, n. 9, 104 S.Ct. 1868.[5]

      [755] Since International Shoe, "specific jurisdiction has become the centerpiece of modern jurisdiction theory, while general jurisdiction [has played] a reduced role." Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2854 (quoting Twitchell, The Myth of General Jurisdiction, 101 Harv. L.Rev. 610, 628 (1988)). International Shoe's momentous departure from Pennoyer's rigidly territorial focus, we have noted, unleashed a rapid expansion of tribunals' ability to hear claims against out-of-state defendants when the episode-in-suit occurred in the forum or the defendant purposefully availed itself of the forum.[6] Our subsequent decisions have continued to bear out the prediction that "specific jurisdiction will come into sharper relief and form a considerably more significant part of the scene." von Mehren & Trautman 1164.[7]

      Our post-International Shoe opinions on general jurisdiction, by comparison, are few. "[The Court's] 1952 decision in Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co. remains the textbook case of general jurisdiction [756] appropriately exercised over a foreign corporation that has not consented to suit in the forum." Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2856 (internal quotation marks and brackets omitted). The defendant in Perkins, Benguet, was a company incorporated under the laws of the Philippines, where it operated gold and silver mines. Benguet ceased its mining operations during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II; its president moved to Ohio, where he kept an office, maintained the company's files, and oversaw the company's activities. Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co., 342 U.S. 437, 448, 72 S.Ct. 413, 96 L.Ed. 485 (1952). The plaintiff, an Ohio resident, sued Benguet on a claim that neither arose in Ohio nor related to the corporation's activities in that State. We held that the Ohio courts could exercise general jurisdiction over Benguet without offending due process. Ibid. That was so, we later noted, because "Ohio was the corporation's principal, if temporary, place of business." Keeton v. Hustler Magazine, Inc., 465 U.S. 770, 780, n. 11, 104 S.Ct. 1473, 79 L.Ed.2d 790 (1984).[8]

      The next case on point, Helicopteros, 466 U.S. 408, 104 S.Ct. 1868, 80 L.Ed.2d 404, arose from a helicopter crash in Peru. Four U.S. citizens perished in that accident; their survivors and representatives brought suit in Texas state court against the helicopter's owner and operator, a Colombian corporation. That company's contacts with Texas were confined to "sending its chief executive officer to Houston for a [757] contract-negotiation session; accepting into its New York bank account checks drawn on a Houston bank; purchasing helicopters, equipment, and training services from [a Texas-based helicopter company] for substantial sums; and sending personnel to [Texas] for training." Id., at 416, 104 S.Ct. 1868. Notably, those contacts bore no apparent relationship to the accident that gave rise to the suit. We held that the company's Texas connections did not resemble the "continuous and systematic general business contacts ... found to exist in Perkins." Ibid. "[M]ere purchases, even if occurring at regular intervals," we clarified, "are not enough to warrant a State's assertion of in personam jurisdiction over a nonresident corporation in a cause of action not related to those purchase transactions." Id., at 418, 104 S.Ct. 1868.

      Most recently, in Goodyear, we answered the question: "Are foreign subsidiaries of a United States parent corporation amenable to suit in state court on claims unrelated to any activity of the subsidiaries in the forum State?" 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct. at 2850. That case arose from a bus accident outside Paris that killed two boys from North Carolina. The boys' parents brought a wrongful-death suit in North Carolina state court alleging that the bus's tire was defectively manufactured. The complaint named as defendants not only The Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company (Goodyear), an Ohio corporation, but also Goodyear's Turkish, French, and Luxembourgian subsidiaries. Those foreign subsidiaries, which manufactured tires for sale in Europe and Asia, lacked any affiliation with North Carolina. A small percentage of tires manufactured by the foreign subsidiaries were distributed in North Carolina, however, and on that ground, the North Carolina Court of Appeals held the subsidiaries amenable to the general jurisdiction of North Carolina courts.

      We reversed, observing that the North Carolina court's analysis "elided the essential difference between case-specific and all-purpose (general) jurisdiction." Id., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2855. Although the placement of a product into the stream of commerce "may bolster an affiliation germane to specific jurisdiction," we explained, such contacts "do not warrant a determination that, based on those ties, the forum has general jurisdiction over a defendant." Id., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2857. As International Shoe itself teaches, a corporation's "continuous activity of some sorts within a state is not enough to support the demand that the corporation be amenable to suits unrelated to that activity." 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154. Because Goodyear's foreign subsidiaries were "in no sense at home in North Carolina," we held, those subsidiaries could not be required to submit to the general jurisdiction of that State's courts. 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2857. See also J. McIntyre Machinery, Ltd. v. Nicastro, 564 U.S. ___, ___, 131 S.Ct. 2780, 2797-2798, 180 L.Ed.2d 765 (2011) (GINSBURG, J., dissenting) (noting unanimous agreement that a foreign manufacturer, which engaged an independent U.S.-based distributor to sell its machines throughout the United States, could not be exposed to all-purpose jurisdiction in New Jersey courts based on those contacts).

      As is evident from Perkins, Helicopteros, and Goodyear, general and specific jurisdiction have followed markedly different trajectories post-International Shoe. Specific jurisdiction has been cut loose from Pennoyer's sway, but we have declined to stretch general jurisdiction beyond [758] limits traditionally recognized.[9] As this Court has increasingly trained on the "relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the litigation," Shaffer, 433 U.S., at 204, 97 S.Ct. 2569, i.e., specific jurisdiction,[10] general jurisdiction has come to occupy a less dominant place in the contemporary scheme.[11]

      IV

      With this background, we turn directly to the question whether Daimler's affiliations with California are sufficient to subject it to the general (all-purpose) personal jurisdiction of that State's courts. In the proceedings below, the parties agreed on, or failed to contest, certain points we now take as given. Plaintiffs have never attempted to fit this case into the specific jurisdiction category. Nor did plaintiffs challenge on appeal the District Court's holding that Daimler's own contacts with California were, by themselves, too sporadic to justify the exercise of general jurisdiction. While plaintiffs ultimately persuaded the Ninth Circuit to impute MBUSA's California contacts to Daimler on an agency theory, at no point have they maintained that MBUSA is an alter ego of Daimler.

      Daimler, on the other hand, failed to object below to plaintiffs' assertion that the California courts could exercise all-purpose jurisdiction over MBUSA.[12] But see Brief for Petitioner 23, n. 4 (suggestion that in light of Goodyear, MBUSA may not be amenable to general jurisdiction in California); Brief for United States as Amicus Curiae 16, n. 5 (hereinafter U.S. Brief) (same). We will assume then, for purposes of this decision only, that MBUSA qualifies as at home in California.

      A

      In sustaining the exercise of general jurisdiction over Daimler, the Ninth Circuit relied on an agency theory, determining that MBUSA acted as Daimler's agent for jurisdictional purposes and then [759] attributing MBUSA's California contacts to Daimler. The Ninth Circuit's agency analysis derived from Circuit precedent considering principally whether the subsidiary "performs services that are sufficiently important to the foreign corporation that if it did not have a representative to perform them, the corporation's own officials would undertake to perform substantially similar services." 644 F.3d, at 920 (quoting Doe v. Unocal Corp., 248 F.3d 915, 928 (C.A.9 2001); emphasis deleted).

      This Court has not yet addressed whether a foreign corporation may be subjected to a court's general jurisdiction based on the contacts of its in-state subsidiary. Daimler argues, and several Courts of Appeals have held, that a subsidiary's jurisdictional contacts can be imputed to its parent only when the former is so dominated by the latter as to be its alter ego. The Ninth Circuit adopted a less rigorous test based on what it described as an "agency" relationship. Agencies, we note, come in many sizes and shapes: "One may be an agent for some business purposes and not others so that the fact that one may be an agent for one purpose does not make him or her an agent for every purpose." 2A C. J. S., Agency § 43, p. 367 (2013) (footnote omitted).[13] A subsidiary, for example, might be its parent's agent for claims arising in the place where the subsidiary operates, yet not its agent regarding claims arising elsewhere. The Court of Appeals did not advert to that prospect. But we need not pass judgment on invocation of an agency theory in the context of general jurisdiction, for in no event can the appeals court's analysis be sustained.

      The Ninth Circuit's agency finding rested primarily on its observation that MBUSA's services were "important" to Daimler, as gauged by Daimler's hypothetical readiness to perform those services itself if MBUSA did not exist. Formulated this way, the inquiry into importance stacks the deck, for it will always yield a pro-jurisdiction answer: "Anything a corporation does through an independent contractor, subsidiary, or distributor is presumably something that the corporation would do `by other means' if the independent contractor, subsidiary, or distributor did not exist." 676 F.3d, at 777 (O'Scannlain, J., dissenting from denial of rehearing en banc).[14] The Ninth Circuit's agency theory [760] thus appears to subject foreign corporations to general jurisdiction whenever they have an in-state subsidiary or affiliate, an outcome that would sweep beyond even the "sprawling view of general jurisdiction" we rejected in Goodyear. 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2856.[15]

      B

      Even if we were to assume that MBUSA is at home in California, and further to assume MBUSA's contacts are imputable to Daimler, there would still be no basis to subject Daimler to general jurisdiction in California, for Daimler's slim contacts with the State hardly render it at home there.[16]

      Goodyear made clear that only a limited set of affiliations with a forum will render a defendant amenable to all-purpose jurisdiction there. "For an individual, the paradigm forum for the exercise of general jurisdiction is the individual's domicile; for a corporation, it is an equivalent place, one in which the corporation is fairly regarded as at home." 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2853-2854 (citing Brilmayer et al., A General Look at General Jurisdiction, 66 Texas L.Rev. 721, 728 (1988)). With respect to a corporation, the place of incorporation and principal place of business are "paradig[m] ... bases for general jurisdiction." Id., at 735. See also Twitchell, 101 Harv. L.Rev., at 633. Those affiliations have the virtue of being unique — that is, each ordinarily indicates only one place — as well as easily ascertainable. Cf. Hertz Corp. v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77, 94, 130 S.Ct. 1181, 175 L.Ed.2d 1029 (2010) ("Simple jurisdictional rules ... promote greater predictability."). These bases afford plaintiffs recourse to at least one clear and certain forum in which a corporate defendant may be sued on any and all claims.

      Goodyear did not hold that a corporation may be subject to general jurisdiction only in a forum where it is incorporated or has its principal place of business; it simply typed those places paradigm all-purpose forums. Plaintiffs would have us look beyond the exemplar bases Goodyear identified, [761] and approve the exercise of general jurisdiction in every State in which a corporation "engages in a substantial, continuous, and systematic course of business." Brief for Respondents 16-17, and nn. 7-8. That formulation, we hold, is unacceptably grasping.

      As noted, see supra, at 753-754, the words "continuous and systematic" were used in International Shoe to describe instances in which the exercise of specific jurisdiction would be appropriate. See 326 U.S., at 317, 66 S.Ct. 154 (jurisdiction can be asserted where a corporation's in-state activities are not only "continuous and systematic, but also give rise to the liabilities sued on").[17] Turning to all-purpose jurisdiction, in contrast, International Shoe speaks of "instances in which the continuous corporate operations within a state [are] so substantial and of such a nature as to justify suit ... on causes of action arising from dealings entirely distinct from those activities." Id., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154 (emphasis added). See also Twitchell, Why We Keep Doing Business With Doing-Business Jurisdiction, 2001 U. Chi. Legal Forum 171, 184 (International Shoe "is clearly not saying that dispute-blind jurisdiction exists whenever `continuous and systematic' contacts are found.").[18] Accordingly, the inquiry under Goodyear is not whether a foreign corporation's in-forum contacts can be said to be in some sense "continuous and systematic," it is whether that corporation's "affiliations with the State are so `continuous and systematic' as to render [it] essentially at home in the forum State." 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2851.[19]

      Here, neither Daimler nor MBUSA is incorporated in California, nor does either entity have its principal place of business there. If Daimler's California activities sufficed to allow adjudication of this Argentina-rooted case in California, the same global reach would presumably be available in every other State in which MBUSA's sales are sizable. Such exorbitant exercises of all-purpose jurisdiction would [762] scarcely permit out-of-state defendants "to structure their primary conduct with some minimum assurance as to where that conduct will and will not render them liable to suit." Burger King Corp., 471 U.S., at 472, 105 S.Ct. 2174 (internal quotation marks omitted).

      It was therefore error for the Ninth Circuit to conclude that Daimler, even with MBUSA's contacts attributed to it, was at home in California, and hence subject to suit there on claims by foreign plaintiffs having nothing to do with anything that occurred or had its principal impact in California.[20]

      C

      Finally, the transnational context of this dispute bears attention. The Court of Appeals emphasized, as supportive of the exercise of general jurisdiction, plaintiffs' assertion of claims under the Alien Tort Statute (ATS), 28 U.S.C. § 1350, and the Torture Victim Protection Act of 1991 (TVPA), 106 Stat. 73, note following 28 U.S.C. § 1350. See 644 F.3d, at 927 ("American federal courts, be they in California or any other state, have a strong interest in adjudicating and redressing international human rights abuses."). Recent decisions of this Court, however, have [763] rendered plaintiffs' ATS and TVPA claims infirm. See Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co., 569 U.S. ___, ___, 133 S.Ct. 1659, 1669, 185 L.Ed.2d 671 (2013) (presumption against extraterritorial application controls claims under the ATS); Mohamad v. Palestinian Authority, 566 U.S. ___, ___, 132 S.Ct. 1702, 1705, 182 L.Ed.2d 720 (2012) (only natural persons are subject to liability under the TVPA).

      The Ninth Circuit, moreover, paid little heed to the risks to international comity its expansive view of general jurisdiction posed. Other nations do not share the uninhibited approach to personal jurisdiction advanced by the Court of Appeals in this case. In the European Union, for example, a corporation may generally be sued in the nation in which it is "domiciled," a term defined to refer only to the location of the corporation's "statutory seat," "central administration," or "principal place of business." European Parliament and Council Reg. 1215/2012, Arts. 4(1), and 63(1), 2012 O.J. (L. 351) 7, 18. See also id., Art. 7(5), 2012 O.J. 7 (as to "a dispute arising out of the operations of a branch, agency or other establishment," a corporation may be sued "in the courts for the place where the branch, agency or other establishment is situated" (emphasis added)). The Solicitor General informs us, in this regard, that "foreign governments' objections to some domestic courts' expansive views of general jurisdiction have in the past impeded negotiations of international agreements on the reciprocal recognition and enforcement of judgments." U.S. Brief 2 (citing Juenger, The American Law of General Jurisdiction, 2001 U. Chi. Legal Forum 141, 161-162). See also U.S. Brief 2 (expressing concern that unpredictable applications of general jurisdiction based on activities of U.S.-based subsidiaries could discourage foreign investors); Brief for Respondents 35 (acknowledging that "doing business" basis for general jurisdiction has led to "international friction"). Considerations of international rapport thus reinforce our determination that subjecting Daimler to the general jurisdiction of courts in California would not accord with the "fair play and substantial justice" due process demands. International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 316, 66 S.Ct. 154 (quoting Milliken v. Meyer, 311 U.S. 457, 463, 61 S.Ct. 339, 85 L.Ed. 278 (1940)).

      * * *

      For the reasons stated, the judgment of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is

      Reversed.

      Justice SOTOMAYOR, concurring in the judgment.

      I agree with the Court's conclusion that the Due Process Clause prohibits the exercise of personal jurisdiction over Daimler in light of the unique circumstances of this case. I concur only in the judgment, however, because I cannot agree with the path the Court takes to arrive at that result.

      The Court acknowledges that Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (MBUSA), Daimler's wholly owned subsidiary, has considerable contacts with California. It has multiple facilities in the State, including a regional headquarters. Each year, it distributes in California tens of thousands of cars, the sale of which generated billions of dollars in the year this suit was brought. And it provides service and sales support to customers throughout the State. Daimler has conceded that California courts may exercise general jurisdiction over MBUSA on the basis of these contacts, and the Court assumes that MBUSA's contacts may be attributed to Daimler for the purpose of deciding whether Daimler is also subject to general jurisdiction.

      Are these contacts sufficient to permit the exercise of general jurisdiction over [764] Daimler? The Court holds that they are not, for a reason wholly foreign to our due process jurisprudence. The problem, the Court says, is not that Daimler's contacts with California are too few, but that its contacts with other forums are too many. In other words, the Court does not dispute that the presence of multiple offices, the direct distribution of thousands of products accounting for billions of dollars in sales, and continuous interaction with customers throughout a State would be enough to support the exercise of general jurisdiction over some businesses. Daimler is just not one of those businesses, the Court concludes, because its California contacts must be viewed in the context of its extensive "nationwide and worldwide" operations. Ante, at 762, n. 20. In recent years, Americans have grown accustomed to the concept of multinational corporations that are supposedly "too big to fail"; today the Court deems Daimler "too big for general jurisdiction."

      The Court's conclusion is wrong as a matter of both process and substance. As to process, the Court decides this case on a ground that was neither argued nor passed on below, and that Daimler raised for the first time in a footnote to its brief. Brief for Petitioner 31-32, n. 5. As to substance, the Court's focus on Daimler's operations outside of California ignores the lodestar of our personal jurisdiction jurisprudence: A State may subject a defendant to the burden of suit if the defendant has sufficiently taken advantage of the State's laws and protections through its contacts in the State; whether the defendant has contacts elsewhere is immaterial.

      Regrettably, these errors are unforced. The Court can and should decide this case on the far simpler ground that, no matter how extensive Daimler's contacts with California, that State's exercise of jurisdiction would be unreasonable given that the case involves foreign plaintiffs suing a foreign defendant based on foreign conduct, and given that a more appropriate forum is available. Because I would reverse the judgment below on this ground, I concur in the judgment only.

      I

      I begin with the point on which the majority and I agree: The Ninth Circuit's decision should be reversed.

      Our personal jurisdiction precedents call for a two-part analysis. The contacts prong asks whether the defendant has sufficient contacts with the forum State to support personal jurisdiction; the reasonableness prong asks whether the exercise of jurisdiction would be unreasonable under the circumstances. Burger King Corp. v. Rudzewicz, 471 U.S. 462, 475-478, 105 S.Ct. 2174, 85 L.Ed.2d 528 (1985). As the majority points out, all of the cases in which we have applied the reasonableness prong have involved specific as opposed to general jurisdiction. Ante, at 762, n. 20. Whether the reasonableness prong should apply in the general jurisdiction context is therefore a question we have never decided,[21] and it is one on which I can appreciate [765] the arguments on both sides. But it would be imprudent to decide that question in this case given that respondents have failed to argue against the application of the reasonableness prong during the entire 8-year history of this litigation. See Brief for Respondents 11, 12, 13, 16 (conceding application of the reasonableness inquiry); Plaintiffs' Opposition to Defendant's Motion to Quash Service of Process and to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction in No. 04-00194-RMW (ND Cal., May 16, 2005), pp. 14-23 (same). As a result, I would decide this case under the reasonableness prong without foreclosing future consideration of whether that prong should be limited to the specific jurisdiction context.[22]

      We identified the factors that bear on reasonableness in Asahi Metal Industry Co. v. Superior Court of Cal., Solano Cty., 480 U.S. 102, 107 S.Ct. 1026, 94 L.Ed.2d 92 (1987): "the burden on the defendant, the interests of the forum State," "the plaintiff's interest in obtaining relief" in the forum State, and the interests of other sovereigns in resolving the dispute. Id., at 113-114, 107 S.Ct. 1026. We held in Asahi that it would be "unreasonable and unfair" for a California court to exercise jurisdiction over a claim between a Taiwanese plaintiff and a Japanese defendant that arose out of a transaction in Taiwan, particularly where the Taiwanese plaintiff had not shown that it would be more convenient to litigate in California than in Taiwan or Japan. Id., at 114, 107 S.Ct. 1026.

      The same considerations resolve this case. It involves Argentine plaintiffs suing a German defendant for conduct that took place in Argentina. Like the plaintiffs in Asahi, respondents have failed to show that it would be more convenient to litigate in California than in Germany, a sovereign with a far greater interest in resolving the dispute. Asahi thus makes clear that it would be unreasonable for a court in California to subject Daimler to its jurisdiction.

      II

      The majority evidently agrees that, if the reasonableness prong were to apply, it would be unreasonable for California courts to exercise jurisdiction over Daimler in this case. See ante, at 761-762 (noting that it would be "exorbitant" for California courts to exercise general jurisdiction over Daimler, a German defendant, in this "Argentina-rooted case" brought by "foreign plaintiffs"). But instead of resolving the case on this uncontroversial basis, the majority reaches out to decide it on a ground neither argued nor decided below.[23]

      [766] We generally do not pass on arguments that lower courts have not addressed. See, e.g., Cutter v. Wilkinson, 544 U.S. 709, 718, n. 7, 125 S.Ct. 2113, 161 L.Ed.2d 1020 (2005). After all, "we are a court of review, not of first view." Ibid. This principle carries even greater force where the argument at issue was never pressed below. See Glover v. United States, 531 U.S. 198, 205, 121 S.Ct. 696, 148 L.Ed.2d 604 (2001). Yet the majority disregards this principle, basing its decision on an argument raised for the first time in a footnote of Daimler's merits brief before this Court. Brief for Petitioner 32, n. 5 ("Even if MBUSA were a division of Daimler AG rather than a separate corporation, Daimler AG would still ... not be `at home' in California").

      The majority's decision is troubling all the more because the parties were not asked to brief this issue. We granted certiorari on the question "whether it violates due process for a court to exercise general personal jurisdiction over a foreign corporation based solely on the fact that an indirect corporate subsidiary performs services on behalf of the defendant in the forum State." Pet. for Cert. i. At no point in Daimler's petition for certiorari did the company contend that, even if this attribution question were decided against it, its contacts in California would still be insufficient to support general jurisdiction. The parties' merits briefs accordingly focused on the attribution-of-contacts question, addressing the reasonableness inquiry (which had been litigated and decided below) in most of the space that remained. See Brief for Petitioner 17-37, 37-43; Brief for Respondents 18-47, 47-59.

      In bypassing the question on which we granted certiorari to decide an issue not litigated below, the Court leaves respondents "without an unclouded opportunity to air the issue the Court today decides against them," Comcast Corp. v. Behrend, 569 U.S. ___, ___, 133 S.Ct. 1426, 1436, 185 L.Ed.2d 515 (2013) (GINSBURG and BREYER, JJ., dissenting). Doing so "does `not reflect well on the processes of the Court.'" Ibid. (quoting Redrup v. New York, 386 U.S. 767, 772, 87 S.Ct. 1414, 18 L.Ed.2d 515 (1967) (Harlan, J., dissenting)). "And by resolving a complex and fact-intensive question without the benefit of full briefing, the Court invites the error into which it has fallen." 569 U.S., at ___, 133 S.Ct., at 1436.

      The relevant facts are undeveloped because Daimler conceded at the start of this litigation that MBUSA is subject to general jurisdiction based on its California contacts. We therefore do not know the full extent of those contacts, though what little we do know suggests that Daimler was wise to concede what it did. MBUSA imports more than 200,000 vehicles into the United States and distributes many of them to independent dealerships in California, where they are sold. Declaration of Dr. Peter Waskönig in Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., No. 04-00194-RMW (N.D.Cal.), ¶ 10, p. 2. MBUSA's California sales account for 2.4% of Daimler's worldwide sales, which were $192 billion in [767] 2004.[24] And 2.4% of $192 billion is $4.6 billion, a considerable sum by any measure. MBUSA also has multiple offices and facilities in California, including a regional headquarters.

      But the record does not answer a number of other important questions. Are any of Daimler's key files maintained in MBUSA's California offices? How many employees work in those offices? Do those employees make important strategic decisions or oversee in any manner Daimler's activities? These questions could well affect whether Daimler is subject to general jurisdiction. After all, this Court upheld the exercise of general jurisdiction in Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co., 342 U.S. 437, 447-448, 72 S.Ct. 413, 96 L.Ed. 485 (1952) — which the majority refers to as a "textbook case" of general jurisdiction, ante, at 755-756 — on the basis that the foreign defendant maintained an office in Ohio, kept corporate files there, and oversaw the company's activities from the State. California-based MBUSA employees may well have done similar things on Daimler's behalf.[25] But because the Court decides the issue without a developed record, we will never know.

      III

      While the majority's decisional process is problematic enough, I fear that process leads it to an even more troubling result.

      A

      Until today, our precedents had established a straightforward test for general jurisdiction: Does the defendant have "continuous corporate operations within a state" that are "so substantial and of such a nature as to justify suit against it on causes of action arising from dealings entirely distinct from those activities"? International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 318, 66 S.Ct. 154, 90 L.Ed. 95 (1945); see also Helicopteros Nacionales de Colombia, S.A. v. Hall, 466 U.S. 408, 416, 104 S.Ct. 1868, 80 L.Ed.2d 404 (1984) (asking whether defendant had "continuous and systematic general business contacts").[26] In every case where we have applied this test, we have focused solely on the magnitude of the defendant's in-state contacts, not the relative magnitude of those contacts in comparison to the defendant's contacts with other States.

      In Perkins, for example, we found an Ohio court's exercise of general jurisdiction [768] permissible where the president of the foreign defendant "maintained an office," "drew and distributed ... salary checks," used "two active bank accounts," "supervised... the rehabilitation of the corporation's properties in the Philippines," and held "directors' meetings," in Ohio. 342 U.S., at 447-448, 72 S.Ct. 413. At no point did we attempt to catalog the company's contacts in forums other than Ohio or to compare them with its Ohio contacts. If anything, we intimated that the defendant's Ohio contacts were not substantial in comparison to its contacts elsewhere. See id., at 438, 72 S.Ct. 413 (noting that the defendant's Ohio contacts, while "continuous and systematic," were but a "limited... part of its general business").[27]

      We engaged in the same inquiry in Helicopteros. There, we held that a Colombian corporation was not subject to general jurisdiction in Texas simply because it occasionally sent its employees into the State, accepted checks drawn on a Texas bank, and purchased equipment and services from a Texas company. In no sense did our analysis turn on the extent of the company's operations beyond Texas.

      Most recently, in Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. ___, 131 S.Ct. 2846, 180 L.Ed.2d 796 (2011), our analysis again focused on the defendant's in-state contacts. Goodyear involved a suit against foreign tire manufacturers by North Carolina residents whose children had died in a bus accident in France. We held that North Carolina courts could not exercise general jurisdiction over the foreign defendants. Just as in Perkins and Helicopteros, our opinion in Goodyear did not identify the defendants' contacts outside of the forum State, but focused instead on the defendants' lack of offices, employees, direct sales, and business operations within the State.

      This approach follows from the touchstone principle of due process in this field, the concept of reciprocal fairness. When a corporation chooses to invoke the benefits and protections of a State in which it operates, the State acquires the authority to subject the company to suit in its courts. See International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 319, 66 S.Ct. 154 ("[T]o the extent that a corporation exercises the privilege of conducting activities within a state, it enjoys the benefits and protection of the laws of that state" such that an "obligatio[n] arise[s]" to respond there to suit); J. McIntyre Machinery, Ltd. v. Nicastro, 564 U.S. ___, ___, 131 S.Ct. 2780, 2796-2797, 180 L.Ed.2d 765 (2011) (plurality opinion) (same principle for general jurisdiction). The majority's focus on the extent of a corporate defendant's out-of-forum contacts is untethered from this rationale. After all, the degree to which a company [769] intentionally benefits from a forum State depends on its interactions with that State, not its interactions elsewhere. An article on which the majority relies (and on which Goodyear relied as well, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2853-2854) expresses the point well: "We should not treat defendants as less amenable to suit merely because they carry on more substantial business in other states.... [T]he amount of activity elsewhere seems virtually irrelevant to ... the imposition of general jurisdiction over a defendant." Brilmayer et al., A General Look at General Jurisdiction, 66 Texas L.Rev. 721, 742 (1988).

      Had the majority applied our settled approach, it would have had little trouble concluding that Daimler's California contacts rise to the requisite level, given the majority's assumption that MBUSA's contacts may be attributed to Daimler and given Daimler's concession that those contacts render MBUSA "at home" in California. Our cases have long stated the rule that a defendant's contacts with a forum State must be continuous, substantial, and systematic in order for the defendant to be subject to that State's general jurisdiction. See Perkins, 342 U.S., at 446, 72 S.Ct. 413. We offered additional guidance in Goodyear, adding the phrase "essentially at home" to our prior formulation of the rule. 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct. at 2851 (a State may exercise general jurisdiction where a defendant's "affiliations with the State are so `continuous and systematic' as to render [the defendant] essentially at home in the forum State"). We used the phrase "at home" to signify that in order for an out-of-state defendant to be subject to general jurisdiction, its continuous and substantial contacts with a forum State must be akin to those of a local enterprise that actually is "at home" in the State. See Brilmayer, supra, at 742.[28]

      [770] Under this standard, Daimler's concession that MBUSA is subject to general jurisdiction in California (a concession the Court accepts, ante, at 758, 759) should be dispositive. For if MBUSA's California contacts are so substantial and the resulting benefits to MBUSA so significant as to make MBUSA "at home" in California, the same must be true of Daimler when MBUSA's contacts and benefits are viewed as its own. Indeed, until a footnote in its brief before this Court, even Daimler did not dispute this conclusion for eight years of the litigation.

      B

      The majority today concludes otherwise. Referring to the "continuous and systematic" contacts inquiry that has been taught to generations of first-year law students as "unacceptably grasping," ante, at 760, the majority announces the new rule that in order for a foreign defendant to be subject to general jurisdiction, it must not only possess continuous and systematic contacts with a forum State, but those contacts must also surpass some unspecified level when viewed in comparison to the company's "nationwide and worldwide" activities. Ante, at 762, n. 20.[29]

      Neither of the majority's two rationales for this proportionality requirement is persuasive. First, the majority suggests that its approach is necessary for the sake of predictability. Permitting general jurisdiction in every State where a corporation has continuous and substantial contacts, the majority asserts, would "scarcely permit out-of-state defendants `to structure their primary conduct with some minimum assurance as to where that conduct will and will not render them liable to suit.'" Ante, at 762 (quoting Burger King Corp., 471 U.S., at 472, 105 S.Ct. 2174). But there is nothing unpredictable about a rule that instructs multinational corporations that if they engage in continuous and substantial contacts with more than one State, they will be subject to general jurisdiction in each one. The majority may not favor that rule as a matter of policy, but such disagreement does not render an otherwise routine test unpredictable.

      Nor is the majority's proportionality inquiry any more predictable than the approach it rejects. If anything, the majority's approach injects an additional layer of uncertainty because a corporate defendant must now try to foretell a court's analysis as to both the sufficiency of its contacts with the forum State itself, as well as the relative sufficiency of those contacts in light of the company's operations elsewhere. Moreover, the majority does not even try to explain just how extensive the company's in-state contacts must be in the context of its global operations in order for general jurisdiction to be proper.

      The majority's approach will also lead to greater unpredictability by radically expanding the scope of jurisdictional discovery. [771] Rather than ascertaining the extent of a corporate defendant's forum-state contacts alone, courts will now have to identify the extent of a company's contacts in every other forum where it does business in order to compare them against the company's in-state contacts. That considerable burden runs headlong into the majority's recitation of the familiar principle that "`[s]imple jurisdictional rules ... promote greater predictability.'" Ante, at 760-761 (quoting Hertz Corp. v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77, 94, 130 S.Ct. 1181, 175 L.Ed.2d 1029 (2010)).

      Absent the predictability rationale, the majority's sole remaining justification for its proportionality approach is its unadorned concern for the consequences. "If Daimler's California activities sufficed to allow adjudication of this Argentina-rooted case in California," the majority laments, "the same global reach would presumably be available in every other State in which MBUSA's sales are sizable." Ante, at 761.

      The majority characterizes this result as "exorbitant," ibid., but in reality it is an inevitable consequence of the rule of due process we set forth nearly 70 years ago, that there are "instances in which [a company's] continuous corporate operations within a state" are "so substantial and of such a nature as to justify suit against it on causes of action arising from dealings entirely distinct from those activities," International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154. In the era of International Shoe, it was rare for a corporation to have such substantial nationwide contacts that it would be subject to general jurisdiction in a large number of States. Today, that circumstance is less rare. But that is as it should be. What has changed since International Shoe is not the due process principle of fundamental fairness but rather the nature of the global economy. Just as it was fair to say in the 1940's that an out-of-state company could enjoy the benefits of a forum State enough to make it "essentially at home" in the State, it is fair to say today that a multinational conglomerate can enjoy such extensive benefits in multiple forum States that it is "essentially at home" in each one.

      In any event, to the extent the majority is concerned with the modern-day consequences of International Shoe's conception of personal jurisdiction, there remain other judicial doctrines available to mitigate any resulting unfairness to large corporate defendants. Here, for instance, the reasonableness prong may afford petitioner relief. See supra, at 764-765. In other cases, a defendant can assert the doctrine of forum non conveniens if a given State is a highly inconvenient place to litigate a dispute. See Gulf Oil Corp. v. Gilbert, 330 U.S. 501, 508-509, 67 S.Ct. 839, 91 L.Ed. 1055 (1947). In still other cases, the federal change of venue statute can provide protection. See 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) (permitting transfers to other districts "[f]or the convenience of parties and witnesses" and "in the interests of justice"). And to the degree that the majority worries these doctrines are not enough to protect the economic interests of multinational businesses (or that our longstanding approach to general jurisdiction poses "risks to international comity," ante, at 762), the task of weighing those policy concerns belongs ultimately to legislators, who may amend state and federal long-arm statutes in accordance with the democratic process. Unfortunately, the majority short circuits that process by enshrining today's narrow rule of general jurisdiction as a matter of constitutional law.

      C

      The majority's concern for the consequences of its decision should have led it [772] the other way, because the rule that it adopts will produce deep injustice in at least four respects.

      First, the majority's approach unduly curtails the States' sovereign authority to adjudicate disputes against corporate defendants who have engaged in continuous and substantial business operations within their boundaries.[30] The majority does not dispute that a State can exercise general jurisdiction where a corporate defendant has its corporate headquarters, and hence its principal place of business within the State. Cf. Hertz Corp., 559 U.S., at 93, 130 S.Ct. 1181. Yet it never explains why the State should lose that power when, as is increasingly common, a corporation "divide[s] [its] command and coordinating functions among officers who work at several different locations." Id., at 95-96, 130 S.Ct. 1181. Suppose a company divides its management functions equally among three offices in different States, with one office nominally deemed the company's corporate headquarters. If the State where the headquarters is located can exercise general jurisdiction, why should the other two States be constitutionally forbidden to do the same? Indeed, under the majority's approach, the result would be unchanged even if the company has substantial operations within the latter two States (and even if the company has no sales or other business operations in the first State). Put simply, the majority's rule defines the Due Process Clause so narrowly and arbitrarily as to contravene the States' sovereign prerogative to subject to judgment defendants who have manifested an unqualified "intention to benefit from and thus an intention to submit to the[ir] laws," J. McIntyre, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2787 (plurality opinion).

      Second, the proportionality approach will treat small businesses unfairly in comparison to national and multinational conglomerates. Whereas a larger company will often be immunized from general jurisdiction in a State on account of its extensive contacts outside the forum, a small business will not be. For instance, the majority holds today that Daimler is not subject to general jurisdiction in California despite its multiple offices, continuous operations, and billions of dollars' worth of sales there. But imagine a small business that manufactures luxury vehicles principally targeting the California market and that has substantially all of its sales and operations in the State — even though those sales and operations may amount to one-thousandth of Daimler's. Under the majority's rule, that small business will be subject to suit in California on any cause of action involving any of its activities anywhere in the world, while its far more pervasive competitor, Daimler, will not be. That will be so even if the small business incorporates and sets up its headquarters elsewhere (as Daimler does), since the small business' California sales and operations would still predominate when "apprais[ed]" in proportion to its minimal "nationwide and worldwide" operations, ante, at 762, n. 20.

      Third, the majority's approach creates the incongruous result that an individual defendant whose only contact with a forum State is a one-time visit will be subject to general jurisdiction if served with process during that visit, Burnham v. Superior Court of Cal., County of Marin, 495 U.S. [773] 604, 110 S.Ct. 2105, 109 L.Ed.2d 631 (1990), but a large corporation that owns property, employs workers, and does billions of dollars' worth of business in the State will not be, simply because the corporation has similar contacts elsewhere (though the visiting individual surely does as well).

      Finally, it should be obvious that the ultimate effect of the majority's approach will be to shift the risk of loss from multinational corporations to the individuals harmed by their actions. Under the majority's rule, for example, a parent whose child is maimed due to the negligence of a foreign hotel owned by a multinational conglomerate will be unable to hold the hotel to account in a single U.S. court, even if the hotel company has a massive presence in multiple States. See, e.g., Meier v. Sun Int'l Hotels, Ltd., 288 F.3d 1264 (C.A.11 2002).[31] Similarly, a U.S. business that enters into a contract in a foreign country to sell its products to a multinational company there may be unable to seek relief in any U.S. court if the multinational company breaches the contract, even if that company has considerable operations in numerous U.S. forums. See, e.g., Walpex Trading Co. v. Yacimientos Petroliferos Fiscales Bolivianos, 712 F.Supp. 383 (S.D.N.Y.1989).[32] Indeed, the majority's approach would preclude the plaintiffs in these examples from seeking recourse anywhere in the United States even if no other judicial system was available to provide relief. I cannot agree with the majority's conclusion that the Due Process Clause requires these results.

      * * *

      The Court rules against respondents today on a ground that no court has considered in the history of this case, that this Court did not grant certiorari to decide, and that Daimler raised only in a footnote of its brief. In doing so, the Court adopts a new rule of constitutional law that is unmoored from decades of precedent. Because I would reverse the Ninth Circuit's decision on the narrower ground that the exercise of jurisdiction over Daimler would be unreasonable in any event, I respectfully concur in the judgment only.

      [1] One plaintiff is a resident of Argentina and a citizen of Chile; all other plaintiffs are residents and citizens of Argentina.

      [2] Daimler was restructured in 2007 and is now known as Daimler AG. No party contends that any postsuit corporate reorganization bears on our disposition of this case. This opinion refers to members of the Daimler corporate family by the names current at the time plaintiffs filed suit.

      [3] At times relevant to this suit, MBUSA was wholly owned by Daimler-Chrysler North America Holding Corporation, a Daimler subsidiary.

      [4] International Shoe was an action by the State of Washington to collect payments to the State's unemployment fund. Liability for the payments rested on in-state activities of resident sales solicitors engaged by the corporation to promote its wares in Washington. See 326 U.S., at 313-314, 66 S.Ct. 154.

      [5] Colloquy at oral argument illustrated the respective provinces of general and specific jurisdiction over persons. Two hypothetical scenarios were posed: First, if a California plaintiff, injured in a California accident involving a Daimler-manufactured vehicle, sued Daimler in California court alleging that the vehicle was defectively designed, that court's adjudicatory authority would be premised on specific jurisdiction. See Tr. of Oral Arg. 11 (Daimler's counsel acknowledged that specific jurisdiction "may well be ... available" in such a case, depending on whether Daimler purposefully availed itself of the forum). Second, if a similar accident took place in Poland and injured Polish plaintiffs sued Daimler in California court, the question would be one of general jurisdiction. See id., at 29 (on plaintiffs' view, Daimler would be amenable to such a suit in California).

      [6] See Shaffer v. Heitner, 433 U.S. 186, 204, 97 S.Ct. 2569, 53 L.Ed.2d 683 (1977) ("The immediate effect of [International Shoe's] departure from Pennoyer's conceptual apparatus was to increase the ability of the state courts to obtain personal jurisdiction over nonresident defendants."); McGee v. International Life Ins. Co., 355 U.S. 220, 222, 78 S.Ct. 199, 2 L.Ed.2d 223 (1957) ("[A] trend is clearly discernible toward expanding the permissible scope of state jurisdiction over foreign corporations and other nonresidents."). For an early codification, see Uniform Interstate and International Procedure Act § 1.02 (describing jurisdiction based on "[e]nduring [r]elationship" to encompass a person's domicile or a corporation's place of incorporation or principal place of business, and providing that "any ... claim for relief" may be brought in such a place), § 1.03 (describing jurisdiction "[b]ased upon [c]onduct," limited to claims arising from the enumerated acts, e.g., "transacting any business in th[e] state," "contracting to supply services or things in th[e] state," or "causing tortious injury by an act or omission in th[e] state"), 9B U.L.A. 308, 310 (1966).

      [7] See, e.g., Asahi Metal Industry Co. v. Superior Court of Cal., Solano Cty., 480 U.S. 102, 112, 107 S.Ct. 1026, 94 L.Ed.2d 92 (1987) (opinion of O'Connor, J.) (specific jurisdiction may lie over a foreign defendant that places a product into the "stream of commerce" while also "designing the product for the market in the forum State, advertising in the forum State, establishing channels for providing regular advice to customers in the forum State, or marketing the product through a distributor who has agreed to serve as the sales agent in the forum State"); World-Wide Volkswagen Corp. v. Woodson, 444 U.S. 286, 297, 100 S.Ct. 559, 62 L.Ed.2d 490 (1980) ("[I]f the sale of a product of a manufacturer or distributor such as Audi or Volkswagen is not simply an isolated occurrence, but arises from the efforts of the manufacturer or distributor to serve, directly or indirectly, the market for its product in other States, it is not unreasonable to subject it to suit in one of those States if its allegedly defective merchandise has there been the source of injury to its owner or to others."); Calder v. Jones, 465 U.S. 783, 789-790, 104 S.Ct. 1482, 79 L.Ed.2d 804 (1984) (California court had specific jurisdiction to hear suit brought by California plaintiff where Florida-based publisher of a newspaper having its largest circulation in California published an article allegedly defaming the complaining Californian; under those circumstances, defendants "must `reasonably anticipate being haled into [a California] court'"); Keeton v. Hustler Magazine, Inc., 465 U.S. 770, 780-781, 104 S.Ct. 1473, 79 L.Ed.2d 790 (1984) (New York resident may maintain suit for libel in New Hampshire state court against California-based magazine that sold 10,000 to 15,000 copies in New Hampshire each month; as long as the defendant "continuously and deliberately exploited the New Hampshire market," it could reasonably be expected to answer a libel suit there).

      [8] Selectively referring to the trial court record in Perkins (as summarized in an opinion of the intermediate appellate court), Justice SOTOMAYOR posits that Benguet may have had extensive operations in places other than Ohio. See post, at 769-770, n. 8 (opinion concurring in judgment) ("By the time the suit [in Perkins] was commenced, the company had resumed its considerable operations in the Philippines," "rebuilding its properties there" and "purchasing machinery, supplies and equipment." (internal quotation marks omitted)). See also post, at 767, n. 5 (many of the corporation's "key management decisions" were made by the out-of-state purchasing agent and chief of staff). Justice SOTOMAYOR's account overlooks this Court's opinion in Perkins and the point on which that opinion turned: All of Benguet's activities were directed by the company's president from within Ohio. See Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co., 342 U.S. 437, 447-448, 72 S.Ct. 413, 96 L.Ed. 485 (1952) (company's Philippine mining operations "were completely halted during the occupation ... by the Japanese"; and the company's president, from his Ohio office, "supervised policies dealing with the rehabilitation of the corporation's properties in the Philippines and ... dispatched funds to cover purchases of machinery for such rehabilitation"). On another day, Justice SOTOMAYOR joined a unanimous Court in recognizing: "To the extent that the company was conducting any business during and immediately after the Japanese occupation of the Philippines, it was doing so in Ohio...." Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. ___, ___, 131 S.Ct. 2846, 2856, 180 L.Ed.2d 796 (2011). Given the wartime circumstances, Ohio could be considered "a surrogate for the place of incorporation or head office." von Mehren & Trautman 1144. See also ibid. (Perkins "should be regarded as a decision on its exceptional facts, not as a significant reaffirmation of obsolescing notions of general jurisdiction" based on nothing more than a corporation's "doing business" in a forum).

      Justice SOTOMAYOR emphasizes Perkins' statement that Benguet's Ohio contacts, while "continuous and systematic," were but a "limited ... part of its general business." 342 U.S., at 438, 72 S.Ct. 413. Describing the company's "wartime activities" as "necessarily limited," id., at 448, 72 S.Ct. 413, however, this Court had in mind the diminution in operations resulting from the Japanese occupation and the ensuing shutdown of the company's Philippine mines. No fair reader of the full opinion in Perkins could conclude that the Court meant to convey anything other than that Ohio was the center of the corporation's wartime activities. But cf. post, at 768 ("If anything, [Perkins] intimated that the defendant's Ohio contacts were not substantial in comparison to its contacts elsewhere.").

      [9] See generally von Mehren & Trautman 1177-1179. See also Twitchell, The Myth of General Jurisdiction, 101 Harv. L.Rev. 610, 676 (1988) ("[W]e do not need to justify broad exercises of dispute-blind jurisdiction unless our interpretation of the scope of specific jurisdiction unreasonably limits state authority over nonresident defendants."); Borchers, The Problem With General Jurisdiction, 2001 U. Chi. Legal Forum 119, 139 ("[G]eneral jurisdiction exists as an imperfect safety valve that sometimes allows plaintiffs access to a reasonable forum in cases when specific jurisdiction would deny it.").

      [10] Remarkably, Justice SOTOMAYOR treats specific jurisdiction as though it were barely there. Given the many decades in which specific jurisdiction has flourished, it would be hard to conjure up an example of the "deep injustice" Justice SOTOMAYOR predicts as a consequence of our holding that California is not an all-purpose forum for suits against Daimler. Post, at 771. Justice SOTOMAYOR identifies "the concept of reciprocal fairness" as the "touchstone principle of due process in this field." Post, at 768 (citing International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 319, 66 S.Ct. 154). She overlooks, however, that in the very passage of International Shoe on which she relies, the Court left no doubt that it was addressing specific — not general — jurisdiction. See id., at 319, 66 S.Ct. 154 ("The exercise of th[e] privilege [of conducting corporate activities within a State] may give rise to obligations, and, so far as those obligations arise out of or are connected with the activities within the state, a procedure which requires the corporation to respond to a suit brought to enforce them can, in most instances, hardly be said to be undue." (emphasis added)).

      [11] As the Court made plain in Goodyear and repeats here, general jurisdiction requires affiliations "so `continuous and systematic' as to render [the foreign corporation] essentially at home in the forum State." 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2851, i.e., comparable to a domestic enterprise in that State.

      [12] MBUSA is not a defendant in this case.

      [13] Agency relationships, we have recognized, may be relevant to the existence of specific jurisdiction. "[T]he corporate personality," International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 66 S.Ct. 154, 90 L.Ed. 95 (1945), observed, "is a fiction, although a fiction intended to be acted upon as though it were a fact." Id., at 316, 66 S.Ct. 154. See generally 1 W. Fletcher, Cyclopedia of the Law of Corporations § 30, p. 30 (Supp.2012-2013) ("A corporation is a distinct legal entity that can act only through its agents."). As such, a corporation can purposefully avail itself of a forum by directing its agents or distributors to take action there. See, e.g., Asahi, 480 U.S., at 112, 107 S.Ct. 1026 (opinion of O'Connor, J.) (defendant's act of "marketing [a] product through a distributor who has agreed to serve as the sales agent in the forum State" may amount to purposeful availment); International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154 ("the commission of some single or occasional acts of the corporate agent in a state" may sometimes "be deemed sufficient to render the corporation liable to suit" on related claims). See also Brief for Petitioner 24 (acknowledging that "an agency relationship may be sufficient in some circumstances to give rise to specific jurisdiction"). It does not inevitably follow, however, that similar reasoning applies to general jurisdiction. Cf. Goodyear, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2855 (faulting analysis that "elided the essential difference between case-specific and all-purpose (general) jurisdiction").

      [14] Indeed, plaintiffs do not defend this aspect of the Ninth Circuit's analysis. See Brief for Respondents 39, n. 18 ("We do not believe that this gloss is particularly helpful.").

      [15] The Ninth Circuit's agency analysis also looked to whether the parent enjoys "the right to substantially control" the subsidiary's activities. Bauman v. DaimlerChrysler Corp., 644 F.3d 909, 924 (2011). The Court of Appeals found the requisite "control" demonstrated by the General Distributor Agreement between Daimler and MBUSA, which gives Daimler the right to oversee certain of MBUSA's operations, even though that agreement expressly disavowed the creation of any agency relationship. Thus grounded, the separate inquiry into control hardly curtails the overbreadth of the Ninth Circuit's agency holding.

      [16] By addressing this point, Justice SOTOMAYOR asserts, we have strayed from the question on which we granted certiorari to decide an issue not argued below. Post, at 765-766. That assertion is doubly flawed. First, the question on which we granted certiorari, as stated in Daimler's petition, is "whether it violates due process for a court to exercise general personal jurisdiction over a foreign corporation based solely on the fact that an indirect corporate subsidiary performs services on behalf of the defendant in the forum State." Pet. for Cert. i. That question fairly encompasses an inquiry into whether, in light of Goodyear, Daimler can be considered at home in California based on MBUSA's in-state activities. See also this Court's Rule 14.1(a) (a party's statement of the question presented "is deemed to comprise every subsidiary question fairly included therein"). Moreover, both in the Ninth Circuit, see, e.g., Brief for Federation of German Industries et al. as Amici Curiae in No. 07-15386(CA9), p. 3, and in this Court, see, e.g., U.S. Brief 13-18; Brief for Chamber of Commerce of United States of America et al. as Amici Curiae 6-23; Brief for Lea Brilmayer as Amica Curiae 10-12, amici in support of Daimler homed in on the insufficiency of Daimler's California contacts for general jurisdiction purposes. In short, and in light of our pathmarking opinion in Goodyear, we perceive no unfairness in deciding today that California is not an all-purpose forum for claims against Daimler.

      [17] International Shoe also recognized, as noted above, see supra, at 753-754, that "some single or occasional acts of the corporate agent in a state ..., because of their nature and quality and the circumstances of their commission, may be deemed sufficient to render the corporation liable to suit." 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154.

      [18] Plaintiffs emphasize two decisions, Barrow S.S. Co. v. Kane, 170 U.S. 100, 18 S.Ct. 526, 42 L.Ed. 964 (1898), and Tauza v. Susquehanna Coal Co., 220 N.Y. 259, 115 N.E. 915 (1917) (Cardozo, J.), both cited in Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co., 342 U.S. 437, 72 S.Ct. 413, 96 L.Ed. 485 (1952), just after the statement that a corporation's continuous operations in-state may suffice to establish general jurisdiction. Id., at 446, and n. 6, 72 S.Ct. 413. See also International Shoe, 326 U.S., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154 (citing Tauza). Barrow and Tauza indeed upheld the exercise of general jurisdiction based on the presence of a local office, which signaled that the corporation was "doing business" in the forum. Perkins' unadorned citations to these cases, both decided in the era dominated by Pennoyer's territorial thinking, see supra, at 753-754, should not attract heavy reliance today. See generally Feder, Goodyear, "Home," and the Uncertain Future of Doing Business Jurisdiction, 63 S.C. L.Rev. 671 (2012) (questioning whether "doing business" should persist as a basis for general jurisdiction).

      [19] We do not foreclose the possibility that in an exceptional case, see, e.g., Perkins, described supra, at 755-757, and n. 8, a corporation's operations in a forum other than its formal place of incorporation or principal place of business may be so substantial and of such a nature as to render the corporation at home in that State. But this case presents no occasion to explore that question, because Daimler's activities in California plainly do not approach that level. It is one thing to hold a corporation answerable for operations in the forum State, see infra, at 763, quite another to expose it to suit on claims having no connection whatever to the forum State.

      [20] To clarify in light of Justice SOTOMAYOR's opinion concurring in the judgment, the general jurisdiction inquiry does not "focu[s] solely on the magnitude of the defendant's in-state contacts." Post, at 767. General jurisdiction instead calls for an appraisal of a corporation's activities in their entirety, nationwide and worldwide. A corporation that operates in many places can scarcely be deemed at home in all of them. Otherwise, "at home" would be synonymous with "doing business" tests framed before specific jurisdiction evolved in the United States. See von Mehren & Trautman 1142-1144. Nothing in International Shoe and its progeny suggests that "a particular quantum of local activity" should give a State authority over a "far larger quantum of ... activity" having no connection to any in-state activity. Feder, supra, at 694.

      Justice SOTOMAYOR would reach the same result, but for a different reason. Rather than concluding that Daimler is not at home in California, Justice SOTOMAYOR would hold that the exercise of general jurisdiction over Daimler would be unreasonable "in the unique circumstances of this case." Post, at 763. In other words, she favors a resolution fit for this day and case only. True, a multipronged reasonableness check was articulated in Asahi, 480 U.S., at 113-114, 107 S.Ct. 1026, but not as a free-floating test. Instead, the check was to be essayed when specific jurisdiction is at issue. See also Burger King Corp. v. Rudzewicz, 471 U.S. 462, 476-478, 105 S.Ct. 2174, 85 L.Ed.2d 528 (1985). First, a court is to determine whether the connection between the forum and the episode-in-suit could justify the exercise of specific jurisdiction. Then, in a second step, the court is to consider several additional factors to assess the reasonableness of entertaining the case. When a corporation is genuinely at home in the forum State, however, any second-step inquiry would be superfluous.

      Justice SOTOMAYOR fears that our holding will "lead to greater unpredictability by radically expanding the scope of jurisdictional discovery." Post, at 770-771. But it is hard to see why much in the way of discovery would be needed to determine where a corporation is at home. Justice SOTOMAYOR's proposal to import Asahi's "reasonableness" check into the general jurisdiction determination, on the other hand, would indeed compound the jurisdictional inquiry. The reasonableness factors identified in Asahi include "the burden on the defendant," "the interests of the forum State," "the plaintiff's interest in obtaining relief," "the interstate judicial system's interest in obtaining the most efficient resolution of controversies," "the shared interest of the several States in furthering fundamental substantive social policies," and, in the international context, "the procedural and substantive policies of other nations whose interests are affected by the assertion of jurisdiction." 480 U.S., at 113-115, 107 S.Ct. 1026 (some internal quotation marks omitted). Imposing such a checklist in cases of general jurisdiction would hardly promote the efficient disposition of an issue that should be resolved expeditiously at the outset of litigation.

      [21] The Courts of Appeals have uniformly held that the reasonableness prong does in fact apply in the general jurisdiction context. See Metropolitan Life Ins. Co. v. Robertson-Ceco Corp., 84 F.3d 560, 573 (C.A.2 1996) ("[E]very circuit that has considered the question has held, implicitly or explicitly, that the reasonableness inquiry is applicable to all questions of personal jurisdiction, general or specific"); see also, e.g., Lakin v. Prudential Securities, Inc., 348 F.3d 704, 713 (C.A.8 2003); Base Metal Trading, Ltd. v. OJSC "Novokuznetsky Aluminum Factory," 283 F.3d 208, 213-214 (C.A.4 2002); Trierweiler v. Croxton & Trench Holding Corp., 90 F.3d 1523, 1533 (C.A.10 1996); Amoco Egypt Oil Co. v. Leonis Navigation Co., 1 F.3d 848, 851, n. 2 (C.A.9 1993); Donatelli v. National Hockey League, 893 F.2d 459, 465 (C.A.1 1990); Bearry v. Beech Aircraft Corp., 818 F.2d 370, 377 (C.A.5 1987). Without the benefit of a single page of briefing on the issue, the majority casually adds each of these cases to the mounting list of decisions jettisoned as a consequence of today's ruling. See ante, at 762, n. 20.

      [22] While our decisions rejecting the exercise of personal jurisdiction have typically done so under the minimum-contacts prong, we have never required that prong to be decided first. See Asahi Metal Industry Co. v. Superior Court of Cal., Solano Cty., 480 U.S. 102, 121, 107 S.Ct. 1026, 94 L.Ed.2d 92 (1987) (Stevens, J., concurring in part and concurring in judgment) (rejecting personal jurisdiction under the reasonableness prong and declining to consider the minimum-contacts prong because doing so would not be "necessary"). And although the majority frets that deciding this case on the reasonableness ground would be "a resolution fit for this day and case only," ante, at 762, n. 20, I do not understand our constitutional duty to require otherwise.

      [23] The majority appears to suggest that Daimler may have presented the argument in its petition for rehearing en banc before the Ninth Circuit. See ante, at 752 (stating that Daimler "urg[ed] that the exercise of personal jurisdiction ... could not be reconciled with this Court's decision in Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. ___, 131 S.Ct. 2846, 180 L.Ed.2d 796 (2011)"). But Daimler's petition for rehearing did not argue what the Court holds today. The Court holds that Daimler's California contacts would be insufficient for general jurisdiction even assuming that MBUSA's contacts may be attributed to Daimler. Daimler's rehearing petition made a distinct argument — that attribution of MBUSA's contacts should not be permitted under an "`agency' theory" because doing so would "rais[e] significant constitutional concerns" under Goodyear. Petition for Rehearing or Rehearing En Banc in No. 07-15386(CA9), p. 9.

      [24] See DaimlerChrysler, Innovations for our Customers: Annual Report 2004, p. 22, http://www.daimler.com/Projects/c2c/channel/documents/1364377_2004_DaimlerChrysler_Annual_Report.pdf (as visited on Jan. 8, 2014, and available in Clerk of Court's case file).

      [25] To be sure, many of Daimler's key management decisions are undoubtedly made by employees outside California. But the same was true in Perkins. See Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Min. Co., 88 Ohio App. 118, 124, 95 N.E.2d 5, 8 (1950) (per curiam) (describing management decisions made by the company's chief of staff in Manila and a purchasing agent in California); see also n. 8, infra.

      [26] While Helicopteros formulated the general jurisdiction inquiry as asking whether a foreign defendant possesses "continuous and systematic general business contacts," 466 U.S., at 416, 104 S.Ct. 1868, the majority correctly notes, ante, at 760, that International Shoe used the phrase "continuous and systematic" in the context of discussing specific jurisdiction, 326 U.S., at 317, 66 S.Ct. 154. But the majority recognizes that International Shoe separately described the type of contacts needed for general jurisdiction as "continuous corporate operations" that are "so substantial" as to justify suit on unrelated causes of action. Id., at 318, 66 S.Ct. 154. It is unclear why our precedents departed from International Shoe's "continuous and substantial" formulation in favor of the "continuous and systematic" formulation, but the majority does not contend — nor do I perceive — that there is a material difference between the two.

      [27] The majority suggests that I misinterpret language in Perkins that I do not even cite. Ante, at 756, n. 8. The majority is quite correct that it has found a sentence in Perkins that does not address whether most of the Philippine corporation's activities took place outside of Ohio. See ante, at 756, n. 8 (noting that Perkins described the company's "wartime activities" as "necessarily limited," 342 U.S., at 448, 72 S.Ct. 413). That is why I did not mention it. I instead rely on a sentence in Perkins' opening paragraph: "The [Philippine] corporation has been carrying on in Ohio a continuous and systematic, but limited, part of its general business." Id., at 438, 72 S.Ct. 413. That sentence obviously does convey that most of the corporation's activities occurred in "places other than Ohio," ante, at 756, n. 8. This is not surprising given that the company's Ohio contacts involved a single officer working from a home office, while its non-Ohio contacts included significant mining properties and machinery operated throughout the Philippines, Philippine employees (including a chief of staff), a purchasing agent based in California, and board of directors meetings held in Washington, New York, and San Francisco. Perkins, 88 Ohio App., at 123-124, 95 N.E.2d, at 8; see also n. 8, infra.

      [28] The majority views the phrase "at home" as serving a different purpose — that of requiring a comparison between a defendant's in-state and out-of-state contacts. Ante, at 761, n. 20. That cannot be the correct understanding though, because among other things it would cast grave doubt on Perkins — a case that Goodyear pointed to as an exemplar of general jurisdiction, 564 U.S., at ___, 131 S.Ct., at 2855-2856. For if Perkins had applied the majority's newly minted proportionality test, it would have come out the other way.

      The majority apparently thinks that the Philippine corporate defendant in Perkins did not have meaningful operations in places other than Ohio. See ante, at 755-756, and n. 8. But one cannot get past the second sentence of Perkins before realizing that is wrong. That sentence reads: "The corporation has been carrying on in Ohio a continuous and systematic, but limited, part of its general business." 342 U.S., at 438, 72 S.Ct. 413. Indeed, the facts of the case set forth by the Ohio Court of Appeals show just how "limited" the company's Ohio contacts — which included a single officer keeping files and managing affairs from his Ohio home office — were in comparison with its "general business" operations elsewhere. By the time the suit was commenced, the company had resumed its considerable mining operations in the Philippines, "`rebuilding its properties'" there and purchasing "`machinery, supplies and equipment.'" 88 Ohio App., at 123-124, 95 N.E.2d, at 8. Moreover, the company employed key managers in other forums, including a purchasing agent in San Francisco and a chief of staff in the Philippines. Id., at 124, 95 N.E.2d, at 8. The San Francisco purchasing agent negotiated the purchase of the company's machinery and supplies "`on the direction of the Company's Chief of Staff in Manila,'" ibid., a fact that squarely refutes the majority's assertion that "[a]ll of Benguet's activities were directed by the company's president from within Ohio," ante, at 756, n. 8. And the vast majority of the company's board of directors meetings took place outside Ohio, in locations such as Washington, New York, and San Francisco. 88 Ohio App., at 125, 95 N.E.2d, at 8.

      In light of these facts, it is all but impossible to reconcile the result in Perkins with the proportionality test the majority announces today. Goodyear's use of the phrase "at home" is thus better understood to require the same general jurisdiction inquiry that Perkins required: An out-of-state business must have the kind of continuous and substantial in-state presence that a parallel local company would have.

      [29] I accept at face value the majority's declaration that general jurisdiction is not limited to a corporation's place of incorporation and principal place of business because "a corporation's operations in a forum other than its formal place of incorporation or principal place of business may be so substantial and of such a nature as to render the corporation at home in the State." Ante, at 761, n. 19; see also ante, at 761. Were that not so, our analysis of the defendants' in-state contacts in Perkins v. Benguet Consol. Mining Co., 342 U.S. 437, 72 S.Ct. 413, 96 L.Ed. 485 (1952), Helicopteros Nacionales de Colombia, S.A. v. Hall, 466 U.S. 408, 104 S.Ct. 1868, 80 L.Ed.2d 404 (1984), and Goodyear would have been irrelevant, as none of the defendants in those cases was sued in its place of incorporation or principal place of business.

      [30] States will of course continue to exercise specific jurisdiction in many cases, but we have never held that to be the outer limit of the States' authority under the Due Process Clause. That is because the two forms of jurisdiction address different concerns. Whereas specific jurisdiction focuses on the relationship between a defendant's challenged conduct and the forum State, general jurisdiction focuses on the defendant's substantial presence in the State irrespective of the location of the challenged conduct.

      [31] See also, e.g., Woods v. Nova Companies Belize Ltd., 739 So.2d 617, 620-621 (Fla.App. 1999) (estate of decedent killed in an overseas plane crash permitted to sue responsible Belizean corporate defendant in Florida courts, rather than Belizean courts, based on defendant's continuous and systematic business contacts in Florida).

      [32] The present case and the examples posited involve foreign corporate defendants, but the principle announced by the majority would apply equally to preclude general jurisdiction over a U.S. company that is incorporated and has its principal place of business in another U.S. State. Under the majority's rule, for example, a General Motors autoworker who retires to Florida would be unable to sue GM in that State for disabilities that develop from the retiree's labor at a Michigan parts plant, even though GM undertakes considerable business operations in Florida. See Twitchell, The Myth of General Jurisdiction, 101 Harv. L.Rev. 610, 670 (1988).

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