Lehman Brothers v. Schein

PETITIONER: Lehman Brothers
LOCATION: Cleveland Board of Education

DOCKET NO.: 73-439
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1972-1975)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

CITATION: 416 US 386 (1974)
ARGUED: Mar 19, 1974
DECIDED: Apr 29, 1974

Donald N. Ruby - for respondents
James J. Hagan - for petitioners

Facts of the case


Media for Lehman Brothers v. Schein

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - March 19, 1974 in Lehman Brothers v. Schein

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - April 29, 1974 in Lehman Brothers v. Schein

Warren E. Burger:

The disposition in 73-439, Lehman Brothers against Schein and the related cases, 440 and 495, will be announced by Mr. Justice Douglas.

William O. Douglas:

These cases are here on petitions for certiorari to the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

The litigation in the District Court in New York is based upon diversity of citizenship.

There is a single question of law that has emerged so far in this litigation and that is, what is the law of Florida that governs this critical central issue.

Now the courts below very quite proper in looking to Florida law under the area -- its competence to determine what the resolution of the question is, because this corporation is a Florida corporation and the members of the Court of Appeals were divided.

There has been a much discussion and debate about the question of what the Florida law is.

There are no Florida decisions, and the Courts of Appeals with Court Appeals and the District Court both made valiant efforts to figure out what the Florida law was by analogous cases and other states including New York.

There are ten states in the country now that have a provision or by statute or by court rule, a federal District Court or a federal Court of Appeals or this Court and certify to the Supreme Court of the state, these laws involved, a question and they have jurisdiction to resolve that question.

We have used it before.

We don’t say that in this case, the Court of Appeals should use it, but we think it is a matter for them in their discretion to consider on the remand of the case.

Therefore, we reverse and remand on that point only.

Warren E. Burger:

Thank you Mr. Justice Douglas.