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State and Federal Governments:
Florida Prepaid Postsecondary Education Expense Board v. College Savings Bank

Docket Number: 98-531
Appealed From: U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
Subjects: Immunity of states; Congressional power; Eleventh Amendment; patent infringement; section 2 of the Patent and Plant Variety Protection Remedy Clarification Act, Pub. L. No. 102-560, 106 Stat. 4230 (1992), 32 U.S.C. 271(h), 296(a)

Argued: April 20, 1999

Decided: June 23, 1999
Vote: 5-4

At Issue: Whether the state can be sued under the Patent and Plant Variety Protection Remedy Clarification Act, which amended patent laws to nullify the sovereign immunity of states.

Decision: The court ruled that act's overriding of states' sovereign immunity is invalid; it conflicts with Fourteenth Amendment due process guarantees. Florida did not consent to the lawsuit or waive its immunity.

The full text of the Florida Prepaid Postsecondary Education Expense Board v. College Savings Bank decision is available at the FindLaw Internet Legal Resources Web site.


Background from The Post
In 3 Cases, High Court Shifts Power to States (June 24, 1999)


Sources: The Washington Post, Supreme Court, The United States Law Week (a Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. publication)



© Copyright 1999 The Washington Post Company

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