Three of the editors of the CAFA Law Blog, Anthony Rollo, Hunter Twiford, and Gabe Crowson, have written one of the first articles in the country characterizing Sections 1332(d)(3) and (4), as enacted by the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, as abstention provisions, rather than jurisdictional exceptions. The article, entitled “Practitioners review ‘abstention’ procedure under Sections 1332(d)(3) and (4),” is published in the Consumer Financial Services Law Report, Vol. 9, Issue 2 (June 15, 2005).
The writers note that Section 1332(d)(3) states that the federal district courts “may decline to exercise jurisdiction” in certain cases, and thus, should be considered a discretionary abstention rule. In addition, the article described how Section 1332(d)(4) contains two mandatory abstention provisions, as that section provides that district courts “must decline to exercise jurisdiction” in certain cases.

As support for their characterization of these provisions as abstention procedures, the authors rely in part on a decision by the United States District Court for the District of Rhode Island in Passa v. Derderian, which held that similar provisions under the Multi-Party Multi-Forum, Trial Jurisdiction Act were properly characterized as abstention rules, not jurisdictional exceptions.
The full text of the abstension article is available on the CAFA Law Blog, and is published with the express permission of the Consumer Financial Services Law Report and LRP Publications, Inc. The article is copyright 2005 by LRP, all rights reserved, and is reprinted on the CAFA Law Blog site with permission.