Erie Doctrine — In Predicting How a State Supreme Court Would Interpret a State Statute, Federal Court Is Bound by State Rules of Statutory Construction and Considers State Supreme Court’s “Considered Dicta”

JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. v. Peeks, 719 F.3d 1010 8th Cir. 2013):

In these consolidated cases, we consider whether a national banking association chartered by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency but not registered to do business with the Arkansas Secretary of State or the Arkansas Bank Department may use the non-judicial foreclosure procedure provided by the Arkansas Statutory Foreclosure Act. Ark. Code Ann. §§ 18-50-101-18-50-117. ***

We look to Arkansas law to decide the merits of this diversity case. See Erie R.R. v. Tompkins, 304 U.S. 64, 78, 58 S. Ct. 817, 82 L. Ed. 1188 (1938). Because the case presents a matter of first im-pression in Arkansas, we must predict, as best we can, how the Arkansas Supreme Court would decide it. See Sloan v. Motorists Mut. Ins. Co., 368 F.3d 853, 856 (8th Cir. 2004) (citation omitted). To do so, we consider "relevant state precedent, analogous decisions, considered dicta, and any other reliable data." HOK Sport, Inc. v. FC Des Moines, L.C., 495 F.3d 927, 935 (8th Cir. 2007) (internal quotation and citation omitted). "[W]e are bound by [Arkansas's] rules of statutory construction" in our analysis. Gershman v. Am. Cas. Co. of Reading, PA, 251 F.3d 1159, 1162 (8th Cir. 2001).

Share this article:


Recent Posts