Monday, July 10, 2017

Dismissal for lack of personal jurisdiction.

The Appellate Division reversed, and dismissed the complaint, finding that defendants did not conduct activities in New York, thereby invoking the benefits and protections of its laws and establishing personal jurisdiction. The telephone and email communications between the Latvian defendants and plaintiff's New York office, concerning a contemplated association in the acquisition of a Latvian bank, with no presence in New York, do not constitute the transaction of business in New York.

In addition, defendants never entered New York in connection with their dealings with plaintiff; the parties' electronic communications also ran between defendants and plaintiff's London office; plaintiff traveled to Latvia in connection with this matter; and, if the bank were acquired, the parties' contemplated association would be centered in Latvia.

Practice point:  Even if New York had personal jurisdiction existed over defendants, the Appellate Division would dismiss on the ground of forum non conveniens, in view of Latvia's being the principal situs of the underlying transaction, the pendency in Latvia of an earlier-filed action between the same parties concerning this dispute, and the likely applicability of Latvian law under a grouping-of-contacts analysis.

Case:  Ripplewood Advisors, LLC v. Callidus Capital SIA, NY Slip Op 05157 (1st Dep't June 22, 2017)

Here is the decision.

Tomorrow's issue:  Precluding photos of an accident site.