Federal Question

Federal Question

An issue directly involving the U.S. Constitution, federal statutes, or treaties between the United States and a foreign country.

Application of these kinds of law to particular cases or interpretation of the meanings of these laws is a power within the authority of the federal courts. The authority to hear lawsuits that turn on a point of federal law is called federal question jurisdiction. Under 28 U.S.C.A. § 1331 (1993), U.S. district courts "shall have original jurisdiction of all civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States." Unlike federal jurisdiction based upon Diversity of Citizenship under 28 U.S.C.A. § 1332 (Supp. 2003), federal question jurisdiction is not dependent on the parties meeting a prescribed amount in controversy.

Cross-references

Jurisdiction; Treaty.

Federal question

n. one basis for filing a lawsuit in federal district court is that it is based on subjects enumerated in the U. S. Constitution or when a federal statute is involved. Thus, existence of such federal question gives the federal court jurisdiction.

References in periodicals archive ?
The United States Supreme Court is, of course, the final arbiter of the meaning of federal law, and the point of taking a case from a state's highest court to the Supreme Court is to secure review of some federal question that the case presents.
At least not in federal question cases; perhaps not in
221) Professors James Liebman and William Ryan assert that Congress must vest federal courts with "effective" power to review all questions of federal law but that this may be done without vesting the federal courts with full federal question jurisdiction.
23) Because they were not diverse, jurisdiction required a federal question.
Against this backdrop, the Court's rules suggest that it might consider whether the case presents an important federal question, a lower court split, an error of law, a conflict with Supreme Court precedent, or other characteristics that may warrant certiorari.
There's a Ninth Circuit law out in California that says if you file a claim under that statute, you can't say that it's truly a federal question.
The United States, after 85 years, fought a civil war to settle the federal question.
48) That practice is based primarily on the jurisdictional statutes, which have never given the Court its constitutionally-permissible appellate diversity jurisdiction, and always either explicitly or by judicial inference have limited its review to federal questions in cases in which the federal question supports jurisdiction but issues of state law were also decided below.
The DTSA creates federal question jurisdiction for trade secret misappropriation and a single body of federal trade secret law, applicable nationwide.
The judge ruled Republic had injected a federal question into an otherwise state-law claim.
A separate and independent basis for federal court jurisdiction is, of course, the presence of a federal question.
306 (1866), Congress experimented with "allow[ing] a diverse defendant to remove his part of the case to federal court--despite the presence of joined, nondiverse co-defendants--if the case against him was 'separable' from the case against the other defendants," Hines & Gensler, supra note 72, at 785-86, but the experiment was such a failure of confusion and inefficiency, see Edward Hartnett, A New Trick from an Old and Abused Dog: Section 1441(c) Lives and Now Permits the Remand of Federal Question Cases, 63 Fordham L.

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