Friday Florida Law Update- Jurisdiction through E-Commerce

TGIF all, and welcome back for your second Florida law update of the week!  Today we discuss a case in which Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal, in a rare move, decided to write an opinion even though the appeal was dismissed in advance of its ruling.  It’s almost as if the court knows that Florida has not delivered me a ton of interesting cases to blog about recently and decided to throw me a bone! 

In reality, the Court found that the issue at hand was important enough to give an opinion on even without a case pending before it any longer.  In Caiazzo v. American Royal Arts Corp., 2011 WL 2135585 (Fla. 4th DCA June 1, 2011), the Fourth DCA analyzed the issue of whether a non-resident engaging in e-commerce throughout the country (including in Florida) can be sued in Florida.  Interestingly enough, the case involved the attempted sale of Beatles memorabilia.  While a customer was on the verge of purchasing memorabilia from one of Plaintiff’s Florida galleries, the customer forwarded a scan of the item to a third-party, who forwarded it further along to Defendant for his opinion.  Defendant, owner of an internet-based Beatles memorabilia store, opined that the item was forged.  Plaintiff filed suit.  The issue was whether the Defendant could be sued in Florida. 

After a thorough review of the law developing in different states throughout the country, the Fourth DCA held that Florida should simply apply it’s normal jurisdictional test to internet entites rather than creating a separate set of rules.  Accordingly, the Court applied Florida’s long-arm statute, finding that Florida courts have both specific and general jurisdiction over the defendant due to his role in the present transaction and his overrall sales in Florida generally.  The Court took no position on the merits of the case, as the merits were not before it on appeal. 

DISCLOSURE:

THE COMMENTS ON THIS BLOG DO NOT CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE.  NOR DO THEY CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.  They are provided for informational purposes only.  Actual legal advice can only be provided after consultation with an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.
Explore posts in the same categories: Florida Law Updates

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