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Monday, October 07, 2013
MLB removes A-Rod suit to Federal Court

When I first read about A-Rod's lawsuit against MLB, I immediately started thinking about removal to federal court on diversity grounds (looking for a good problem for Civ Pro next semester). It was clear that, as an unincorporated association, MLB is almost certainly a citizen of New York (among other states), thus not diverse from Rodriguez and unable to remove to federal court in New York on diversity grounds under the Forum-Defendant Rule.

But I did not think it all the way through. Today, MLB and Selig removed the case to the Southern District of New York based on federal question jurisdiction. MLB argues that the claims are preempted by ยง 301 of the Labor Management Relations Act; that statute is said to have "unusually powerful preemptive force," such that any state-law claims are converted into federal claims arising under the act and are deemed to arise under the laws of the United States.

From federal court, of course, MLB will argue that the claims are preempted by the CBA and should be sent to arbitration.


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