Beginning Today, New Removal and Venue Rules Improve Defendants’ Access to Federal Courts

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Today, a number of important but unheralded changes to the landscape of federal jurisdiction take effect. These changes are part of the Federal Courts Jurisdiction and Venue Clarification Act of 2011, H.R. 394, P.L. 112-63 (the “Act”), signed into law by President Obama on December 7, 2011. Focusing on the removal and venue statutes, the Act clarifies many aspects of the jurisdictional inquiry and improves defendants’ access to federal courts. The far-reaching new law applies to any action “commenced” after today.

Highlights of the law include...

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