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Powerex v. Reliant Energy Services, Inc.

Appeal of a District Court’s Remand to State Court After Incorrect Removal

Public Citizen filed an amicus brief on behalf of Law Professors Arthur R. Miller, Erwin Chemerinsky, et al. supporting respondents. The brief addressed the question that the Supreme Court asked the parties to brief: whether the Court of Appeals had jurisdiction to review the district court’s remand order, notwithstanding 28 U.S.C. Sec. 1447(d) (removing appellate jurisdiction over district court decisions to remand cases back to state court during an early stage in litigation). The brief explained why Thermtron Products, Inc. v. Hermansdorfer, 423 U.S. 336 (1976), which found limited grounds for appeal of a district court’s remand order, should be overruled or limited to its facts.

The Supreme Court ruled for respondents finding the appellate court should not have reviewed the district court’s decision to remand due to lack of subject matter jurisdiction.