Texas Causes of Action & Affirmative Defenses

Texas Causes of Action & Affirmative Defenses

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Federal Preemption [affirmative defense against state-law claim]

When federal law overrides state law A state law that conflicts with federal law is preempted and has no effect. U.S. CONST. art. VI, cl. 2; Maryland v. Louisiana, 451 U.S. 725, 747 (1981); BIC Pen, 251 S.W.3d at 504. State law may be preempted in three ways: (1) expressly, by a federal law specifically preempting state law; (2) impliedly, by the scope of a federal law or regulation indicating Congress intended the federal law or regulation to exclusively occupy the field; or (3) impliedly, by the state law conflicting with a federal law or regulation to the extent it is impossible to comply with both or by the state law obstructing Congress’s objectives as reflected by the federal law. BIC Pen Corp. v. Carter, 251 S.W.3d 500, 504 (Tex. 2008) SOURCE: Texas Supreme Court - 6/17/11 - Bic Pen Corp. v. Carter II, No. 09-0039 (Tex. June 17, 2011)(Johnson)(product liability, cigarette lighter safety for children)