Are Twombly & Iqbal Affecting Where Plaintiffs File? A Study Comparing Removal Rates by State
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Examines the impact, if any, of the Supreme Court's decisions in Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly and Ashcroft v. Iqbal on civil litigation in the United States federal courts. Predicted that heightened pleading standards in federal courts would encourage plaintiffs in cases with federal and state claims-especially plaintiffs alleging a violation of their civil rights-to file in state courts to benefit from the courts' liberal notice pleading standard. After reviewing both existing commentary and empirical research about the impact of Twombly and Iqbal, this Article explains the methodology for this removal study, presents the results of a preliminary study examining removal rates of four states, and presents the results of our expanded examination of removal rates of all fifty states and the District of Columbia.