Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentLaw & Ethics · 1 decade ago

Can a bill override case law?

I am doing a very realistic court simulation game. There is a court law relating to parens patriae that states “the state must show a direct interest of its own and not merely seeking financial recovery for the benefit of individuals who are the real parties in the lawsuit." In the case we are working on, a government of another country is suing a United States Corporation. That goverment, made a bill "To give power to the Central Government to take over legal claims connected with the Bhopal gas leak disaster. The goal of this bill is to produce an equitable legal settlement. This is to be done with speed, effectiveness, and to the best advantage of the victims." right before the case was heard. Which one do we follow? (We are the defendant representing the corporation)



and Oklahoma ex. rel. Johnson v. Cook

1 Answer

  • 1 decade ago
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    Your “the state….real parties to the lawsuit” is simply to give the gov’t standing.

    If that gov’t is claiming jurisdiction then our laws don’t matter. Comity is the application (recognition) of foreign laws in our courts.

    If that is done, and a US court is to apply the laws of the foreign country, then it depends on the precedential power that country gives to a ‘bill’. Here, procedurally, a ‘bill’ is nothing until enacted. Until that time it is not controlling. And our constitutional ban on ex post facto laws may forbid it’s application to settled cases unless the law states with specificity that it is to be retroactive in application. Follow? The question to you is, what are these rules in that country? That is your simulation answer.

    It is not equated with Erie in dealing with inter state conflict of laws rules but is somewhat similar.

    The procedure and rule of law of the other country will be applied directly in our courts, procedurally and substantively.

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