Michael D. Ramsey

              Professor of Law, University of San Diego Law School

International Civil Litigation, Fall 2014 Course Webpage




Class Meetings:    Monday & Wednesday, 4:00 pm - 5:15 pm


Office Hours:     1:00 pm to 3:30 pm, Monday and Wednesday, Room 319, Warren Hall


Textbook:  Gary Born & Peter Rutledge, International Civil Litigation in U.S. Courts (5th edition, Aspen, 2011).

Additional assignments may be made from materials available on-line.





This space will be used for announcements regarding class cancellations, make-ups, optional events of interest, and other updates regarding the course schedule.


A revised Reading List for Unit 3 is available below.





This space will be used to post assignments for each class meeting; these assignments will also be announced in class.  After the first assignment, assignments will be keyed to the course Reading Lists.  The Reading Lists for Units 1, 2, and 3 are posted below. The Reading List for Unit 3 has been slightly revised (and is now designated Reading List Part 3 [revised]).


Assignment for Monday, November 3, 2014


Reading List Part III.C (this corresponds to the balance of Part III.B of the unrevised reading list).  Focus on Lehman v. Minmetals.

Apply the choice of law materials to the McKenna v. TIMCO hypothetical.


Assignment for Wednesday, October 29, 2014


Reading List Part III.B, pp. 777-791 only (this corresponds to Part III.B of the revised reading list)

Restatement (First) of Conflicts of Law, §§ 332, 358.

Restatement (Second) of Conflicts of Law, §§ 187, 188, 202, 206


Assignment for Monday, October 27, 2014


Reading List Part III.A.

Restatement (First) of Conflicts of Law, §§ 377, 378, 379, 384.

Restatement (Second) of Conflicts of Law, §§ 6, 10, 127, 145, 146, 156.


Also (in connection with the prior assignment), look at Phillips Petroleum Co. v. Shutts, 472 U.S. 797 (1985) (part III of the opinion only).


Assignment for Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Reading List Part II, focus on Allstate v. Hague and Garamendi.


Assignment for Monday, October 20, 2014


Reading List Part I.E (note: this is a supplemental reading, “Suing for Violations of International Law under the Alien Tort Statute.”  It is available below).


Assignment for Wednesday, October 15, 2014


Reading List Part I.C & D, focus on Hartford and Empagran

Note: This assignment includes Restatement (Third) of Foreign Relations Law of the United States, Sections 402, 403 and 441 (available online).


Assignment for Monday, October 13, 2014


New Reading List (Unit 3 – Choice of Law) [available below], Part I.A & B, focus on Morrison and Arabian American Oil Co.


Assignment for Wednesday, October 8, 2014


Reading List Part III.B (focus on China Trade and Kaepa v. Achilles)

Apply our lis pendens and anti-suit injunction cases and discussion to the TIMCO hypothetical.


Assignment for Monday, October 6, 2014

Reading List Part III.A (focus on
Ingersoll and Continental Time)

To begin the class, we will apply the forum selection cases to the TIMCO hypothetical (version #4)


Assignment for Wednesday, October 1, 2014


Unit 2 Reading List, Part II (focus on the main cases, including The Bremen, Colonial Leasing, Carnival Cruise, and Richards).

ICL Hypothetical Version #4 (available below)


Assignment for Monday, September 29, 2014


Unit 2 Reading List, Part I D, E, & F (focus on the main cases)

Consider the arguments for and against a forum non conveniens dismissal in the TIMCO hypothetical.


Assignment for Wednesday, September 24, 2014


New reading list (Unit 2 - forum selection) [available below], part I A, B, & C (focus on Piper, Dow and Iragorri)


To conclude the discussion of service, consider (a) can we use Hague Articles 8 or 10 to serve defendants in (i) China, (ii) Mauritius, and (iii) Cayman Islands [note: this requires use of the Hague Convention status table]; and (b) what is the effect of Schlunk on efforts to serve process in our hypothetical?


Assignment for Monday, September 22, 2014


Reading List Part III C, D & E

Hague Service Convention, especially Articles 1 through 5, 10 and 19, available at www.hcch.net, or search “Hague Service Convention”

Assess the service options under the Convention for the Hypothetical.  Note: you must use the Convention’s “Status Table” to analyze this problem.  Further note:  The Cayman Islands are a territory of the United Kingdom.


Assignment for Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Reading List Part III A & B (focus on the introduction and the Rio Properties case)

Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 4(f)

Apply these sources to the hypothetical to develop a strategy for serving the defendants (assume the Hague Convention does not apply).


Assignment for Monday, September 15, 2014


Reading List Part II E & F

Review FSIA Sections 1605(a) and 1605A


We will begin with a discussion of Saudi Arabia v. Nelson from the prior reading.


Assignment for Wednesday, September 10, 2014


Reading List Part II D (focus on Argentina v. Weltover and FSIA Section 1605(a)(2))

Also, look at 28 U.S.C. Section 1330


We will begin class by applying the prior reading to Hypothetical #3


Assignment for Monday, September 8, 2014


Reading List Part II.A, B & C

(Note: this includes the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act [FSIA], 28 U.S.C. Sections 1602-1605, which must be found online)

ICL Hypothetical Version #3 (available below)


We will begin with a concluding discussion of Daimler v. Bauman; please re-read that case.


Assignment for Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Reading List Part I.D

ICL Hypothetical Version #2 (available below); assess in light of the Part I.D reading

Reading List Part I E & F


No class Monday, September 1, 2014 (Labor Day)


Assignment for Wednesday, August 27, 2014


Reading List Part I.C (together with Part I.A & B from the previous assignment).

Consider how to argue for (and against) personal jurisdiction in the hypothetical.


Assignment for Monday, August 25, 2014 (first class meeting):


(1)  Download “ICL hypothetical – version #1” (available below) and be prepared to discuss the following:


What legal issues may be posed by the transnational aspects of the dispute described in the hypothetical (that is, litigation issues aside from the merits of the client’s claim)?  Try to identify at least three potential barriers to a successful outcome for your client.  Consider what additional facts you might want to investigate that implicate these sorts of issues (as distinct from the merits of the case).


(2)  Read pp. 81-91 and 108-137 of the text book, with focus on the Helicopteros and Adams cases & related notes on pp. 117-129.  For many people this material may seem familiar from Civil Procedure. Consider it with particular focus on transnational litigation.  Why do these issues matter so much more in transnational litigation than they do in domestic litigation?






Assignment for first class meeting (Aug. 25, 2014)

Reading List -- Unit 1 (Suing Transnational Defendants)


ICL Hypothetical Version 1

ICL Hypothetical Version 2 (for 9/3)

ICL Hypothetical Version 3 (for 9/8)


Reading List -- Unit 2 (Forum Selection in Transnational Cases)


ICL Hypothetical Version 4 (for 10/1)


Reading List -- Unit 3 (Choice of Law in Transnational Cases) [revised]

Supplemental Reading: Suing for Violations of International Law under the Alien Tort Statute (for 10/20)

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