Nonetheless, in Mallory v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co.,15 the Pennsylvania
Supreme Court ruled that the Pennsylvania business registration statute was
unconstitutional. This Note argues that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court applied the
wrong legal analysis by employing a Daimler due process analysis instead of a consent
analysis. In doing so, the court ignored U.S. Supreme Court precedent and misinterpreted
Daimler. Rather than asking whether the defendant was at home in Pennsylvania, the
court should have asked whether the defendant actually consented to personal
jurisdiction. Additionally, this Note argues that when the Pennsylvania Supreme Court
did discuss consent, it applied the wrong analytical framework.
This Note begins by providing the facts and procedural history of Mallory in Parts
II.A and II.B, respectively. Section III discusses the history of personal jurisdiction
before Mallory, focusing on personal jurisdiction, general jurisdiction, consent, consent
via business registration statute, the unconstitutional conditions doctrine, and personal
jurisdiction in Pennsylvania. Section IV provides a detailed look at the Pennsylvania
Supreme Court’s analysis of the case.
Section V offers an analysis and discussion of the court’s opinion and argues that
the Mallory court improperly used a Daimler analysis rather than a consent analysis to
examine the statute. Additionally, Section V points out that when the court discussed the
defendant’s consent, its analysis was not supported by the facts or the law. Ultimately,
this Note argues that by ruling the Pennsylvania business registration statute
unconstitutional, the court applied Supreme Court precedent that does not exist.