A Minnesota company got into a commercial dispute with a Florida company about an employee, working in Florida, who jumped ship from the Florida to the Minnesota company (again, still working in Florida).
The two companies had the proverbial “race to the courthouse” filing competing actions on the same day, one in Minnesota federal court (for declaratory relief) and one in Florida state court.
Today U.S. District Court Judge Schiltz (D. Minn.) sent the Minnesota plaintiff packing, holding that the case, for a gamut of reasons, belonged in Florida, not Minnesota.
Some of the decision’s more entertaining language (and perhaps more broadly interesting analysis) concerned whether the Florida company’s rather homely web presence (with a dog named “Little A,” a site ”less sophisticated than a typical teenager’s Facebook page”) was a “robust and sophisticated website” such that discovery would be warranted to determine whether the out-of-state defendant had sufficient contacts with the forum state to justify imposition of personal jurisdiction.
Finding it ”highly unlikely that thousands of Minnesotans have requested a ‘special report’ on annuities through this crude and cryptic website,” the Court refused to permit discovery on the jurisdictional issue. (The Court’s opinion is after the jump.)