The U.S. Supreme Court today held that state and federal courts sitting in State A lack the power to compel someone who resides outside of State A to answer a lawsuit in State A unless the out-of-stater did something that caused harm in State A. Hurting a person who lives in State A won't do it. You pretty much have to injure the person in State A.

In Walden v. Fiore, No. 12-574 (U.S. Feb. 25, 2014), a 9-0 Court reversed a ruling that allowed plaintiffs who lived in California and Nevada to hale a Georgia policeman into a Las Vegas federal court for seizing money from them in Atlanta on suspicion that the cash came from a drug deal. Per Justice Thomas, the Court said:

The proper focus of the "minimum contacts" inquiry in intentional-tort cases is"‘the relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the litigation.’" Calder[ v. Jones], 465 U. S.[ 783,] 788[ (1984)]. And it is the defendant, not the plaintiff or third parties, who must create contacts with the forum State. In this case, the application of those principles is clear: Petitioner’s relevant conduct occurred entirely in Georgia, and the mere fact that his conduct affected plaintiffs with connections to the forum State does not suffice to authorize jurisdiction. We therefore reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals.

Id. at 13-14.

The ruling follows one from last month on whether a court has "general jurisdiction" over an out-of-state entity. See Putting on a New Shoe: Supreme Court Cobbles Strict Test for Jurisdiction over Tort Cases.