Blair Gisi featured in the USFN January 2017 e-Update

Can the Rooker-Feldman Doctrine Bar Jurisdiction of Federal Claims?

Like any good and interesting legal question, the answer is: “it depends”. To begin, a brief description of the Rooker-Feldman Doctrine is in order.

The Rooker-Feldman Doctrine arose from two cases: Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co., 263 U.S. 413 (1983) and District of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman, 460 U.S. 462 (1983).  The original purpose of the doctrine was to protect against the federal courts becoming de facto appellate courts for state-court losers.  It was codified as 28 USCS § 1257.  However, the idea behind Rooker-Feldman began to preclude jurisdiction in a larger scope than intended, so in 2005, the doctrine was reigned in and refined.


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