Law School Resources

Case Briefs, Hypos, Class Notes, Outlines, & Analysis

Law School Resources

Civil Procedures

 Joinder of Claims and Parties: Expanding the Scope of the Civil

F.      Interpleader – procedure whereby a Party against whom several mutually exclusive Claims have been asserted w/r/t the same debt, fund or property may join the claimants in the same action and require then to litigate among themselves their rights, if any, to the debt, fund or property.

1.      Historical Limitation on the Use of Interpleader

a.       Hancock Oil (P) v Independent Distributing Co (D)

·        P filed a suit seeking Interpleading against 2 groups, each of which asserted the right to receive royalties reserved under the terms of P’ lease. 

2.      Jurisdictional Problem


New York Life Ins Co (D) v Dunleavy (P)

·        P brought action against D for the surrender value of a life ins policy on her father. D asserted a s a defense an prior Interpleader action instituted by D in Pennsylvania after a garnishment by a 3rd

3..      Interpleader in the Federal Courts

a.       Federal Statutory Interpleader

b.      Federal Rule 22 Interpleader

c.       Liability of Stake holder

(1)   Pan American Fire & Casualty (D) v Revere (P)

·        Truck collided with a school bus head on killing 3 and injuring many more; a few moments later 2 cars following the bus collided. D, the insurer for the truck, having 3 suits filed against it, instituted the Interpleading action and deposited the $100,000 full amount of its policy limit, with the Ct, stating it had no interest in the ins proceeds.

d.      Improper Use of Interpleader

(1)   State Farm Fire & Casualty (D) v Tashire (D)

·        G. Interventionon

1. 2.2.      Types of Intervention

a.       Intervention of Right - Rule 24(a) Intervention is granted as a matter of right where:

(1)   A Fed’l statute confers an Unconditional right to intervene; or

(2)   Disposition of the pending action would as a practical matter, impair or impede the applicant’s interest in the subject matter of that action.

b.      Permissive Intervention Rule 24(b) The Ct has discretion to permit a non[arty to intervene if:


(2)   The applicant’s claim or defense has a common question of law or fact with the main action.

3.      Effective Intervention

a.       Jurisdiction –

1.      If Intervention is a Matter of Right, the Intervenor’s claim is deemed “ancillary” to the main litigation and no Jurisdctnl problem is presented.

a.a.       NOT destroy Diversity Jurisdiction.

2.      If Intervention is Permissive, this is in effect a new Claim and is proper ONLY if independent grounds of Jurisdctn – BOTH with regard to Citizenship AND Jurisdictional amount – exist as to the Intervenors.

b.b.      Judgment

4.      State Rules

5.      Application – Intervention NOT Available

a. ·        P sued D for damages suffered in auto accident resulting from D’s reckless drinking and driving. P’s original Complaint was amended to omit reference to D’s drinking. D’s insurer filed a Complaint in Intervention alleging that P and D colluded to defraud them and require them to pay for the accident.

6.      Application – Intervention Proper

a.       Smuck (D) v Hobson (P)

·        In a prior case, (Hobson (P) v Hansen (D)) in which P was the D, a Class Action suit against a local Board of Education and its individual members for racial and economic discrimination. The Ct ruled in favor of the Class Action. The Brd of Education decided not to appeal the case. T that point, P the former superintendent and Smuck (P) one of the dissenting Board members appealed. Both Hansen (P) and 20 parents of affected schoolchildren also appealed and moved to Intervene.

7.      Stare Decisis [“to stand by things decided” - Precedent] as Basis for Intervention

a.       Atlantis Development Corp (P) v US (D)

·        P lay claim to some offshore submerged reefs and began developing them for commercial use. The US asserted that permission was needed to erect structures on the reef and the P attempted to convince the US Corps of Engineers that the reefs were beyond the Jurisdctn of the US. The Corps of Engineers brought suit against the General Contractor, Acme general Contractors, for trespass. P sought to Intervene in that suit under Stare Decisis theory, that the decision in that case would impact its rights.