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Pennsylvania’s Long-Arm Statute Gets Even Longer!

In Hammons v. Ethicon, 2020 Pa. LEXIS 5511 (Pa., Oct. 21, 2020), a landmark case involving the issue of personal jurisdiction under Pennsylvania’s long arm statute, 42 Pa.C.S. § 5322, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, in a 6-1 decision, upheld jurisdiction over a New Jersey based pelvic mesh manufacturer and affirmed a $12.85 million dollar jury verdict in favor of the plaintiff. In so doing, the majority rejected the defendant’s argument that jurisdiction was unconstitutional per the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Bristol-Myers Squibb Company v. Superior Court of California, 137 S. Ct. 1773 (2017), and concluded that the Supreme Court’s holding in Bristol-Myers Squibb did not represent a major shift in the way a state court should analyze specific jurisdiction over a defendant, contrary to the opinion of many legal experts.

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