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CivPro - Preclusion


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What is claim preclusion?
CL requirement which forbids a party from relitigating a claim that has already or s/h/b already adjudicated as part of the first litigation.

A valid, final judgment, rendered on the merits, constitutes an absolute bar to a subs action b/w the same parties, or those in privity with them, upon the same claim or demand.

Operates to bind the parties both as to issues actually litigated and determined in the first suit, and as to those grounds or issues that m/h/b, but w/n, actually raised and decided in that action.

First judgment, if valid, final, and on the merits, thus puts an end to the whole cause of action.
What is the restatement on CP?
When a valid and final judgment rendered in an action extinguishes a P claim pursuant to the rules of merger and bar, the claim extinguished includes all rights of the P to remedies against the D with respect to all or any part of the transaction, or series of connected transactions, out of which the claim arose.
What factual grouping constitutes a transaction, and what groupings constitute a series, are to be determined pragmatically, giving weight to such considerations as whether the facts are related in time, space, origin, or motivation, whether they form a convenient trial unit, and whether their tx as a unit conforms to the partiesÂ’ expectations or business understanding or usage
How do counterclaims relate to CP?
Counterclaims - Rule 13(a) - provides that compulsory counterclaims are lost if not raised at the proper time. But applies only when D has entered a pleading (answer, etc.)

Failure to assert in a pleading a compulsory counterclaim which, at the time of the pleading the pleader has against the opposing party results in the loss of the counterclaim.

A cause of action comprises defenses that were or might h/b raised. If such defenses w/n presented in their entirety in the first action, they are lost.

Bar a counterclaim when its preclusion w/ nullify rights established in the prior action (change the outcome).
What are the elements of CP?
2 cases
Same claim
Same parties
Claim h/b actually and fully litigated
Looks only at the facts.
What constitutes the same claim in CP?
All or any part of the transaction, or series of connected transactions, out of which the claim arose.

Whether the facts are related in time, space, origin, or motivation

If the subs action involves a different claim that raises issues decided in the prior action, collateral estoppel comes into play.
What constitute same parties in CP?
Identical parties or persons in privity with them.

Privity - one whose legal interest was adequately represented in the prior action.
What constitues a final judgment on the merits in CP?
Judgment in the prior action m/b:
Valid when rendered - prior ct m/h had SMJ and PJ and used the proper form and manner of notice. If any of these issues concerning the validity of the ct judgment was adjudicated in the prior action, that determination is itself res judicata. Hence, these issues, once litigates, are not subject to collateral attack.

Finality - some judgments are final for res judicata purposes even though they are not final in the ordinary sense. Administrative decisions m/b final for res judicata purposes. Although general rule is that a judgment is final even though an appeal is pending, some ct will postpone their res judicata determinations until the appeal in the prior action is decided and others will vacate their own res judicata determinations pursuant to R.60b5.

On the merits - m/b considered in connection with R.41b.
How does a judgment on the merits affect CP?
Rule 41(b) - A dismissal, other than a dismissal for lack of juris, improper venue, or failure to join a party, is an adjudication on the merits.

Whether a final judgment upon one claim precludes the filing of another claim depends on whether the 2nd claim embodies the same caus of action as the first.

A fed ct m/ determine whether to give claim preclusive effect to a state ct judgment upon a cause of action over which the state ct h/no SMJ by determining whether the state ct w/ give preclusive effect to such a judgment.
What is issue preclusion?
When the subs lawsuit involves a different claim that raises issues litigated in the prior lawsuit.
What are the tests for IP?
i) the prior judgment is on the same issue and the same facts
ii) final judgment on the merits
iii) b/w same parties or in privity w/ them
iv) issue fully litigated in first case
v) determination is essential to the judgment - determination is conclusive in a subseq action, whether on the same or dif claim (precluded from litigating issues again)
What is litigated and determined in IP?
if you d/n bring an issue in the 1st case, there is no IP for the 2nd b/c it w/n actually litigated
What is essential to the judgment in IP?
1st rest - if alternative grounds for decision exist, both are precluded in subseq litigation.
2nd rest - neither are precluded if there are alternate grounds.
What is the difference between mutuality and nonmutuality states?
Mutuality states prevent a nonparty to the prior action from precluding a party from relitigating an issue the latter has litigated and lost - since the nonparty w/n/h/b bound by the issue h/ it been decided the other way, it w/b unfair to allow him to use IP in his favor based on the prior action. Nonmutuality states -IP c/n be applied against a person who was not a party to the prior action, as that person h/n had her day in court.
What is offensive IP?
new P is using IP against same D.
P1 v. D for injuries - P wins
P2 v. D
New P c/ claim IP b/c D had a full and fair opportunity to litigate the matter in the first suit.

P1 v. D - D wins
P2 v. D
D c/n argue that the issue is precluded b/c P2 w/n there.
Courts s/n allow the use of offensive IP where:
(i) P c/ easily have joined in the earlier action (wait&see P) or
(ii) the application of issue preclusion w/b unfair to D b/c he had little incentive to defend the earlier action vigorously (small damages in first case) or
(iii) b/c the 2nd action affords the D different procedural opportunities unavailable in the first action that c/ readily cause a different result or
(iv) there m/b inconsistent judgments in D outcomes or
(v) if there is an inconvenient forum. (Parklane Hosiery v. Shore)
What is defensive IP?
new D is using IP against same P - promotes joinder
P v. D1 for injuries - D1 wins
P v. D2
D2 claims nonmutual IP - P was in first case, brought case at a time they wanted, juris and venue that they wanted to. Allowed - nonmutual defensive IP

P v. D1 - P wins
P v. D2 - P claims IP -
D2 w/n party in first lawsuit, never had day in ct. New party c/ claim IP, but not same party as in 1st action.

Prevents a P from relitigating identical issues by switching D.

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