Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Website Disclaimer Succeeds in Staving off Personal Jurisdiciton

The Tenth Circuit in Tomlinson v. H & R Block Inc., No. 04-7070 (10th Cir. Oct. 12, 2005) has held that defendant H&R Block's website disclaimer was sufficient to undermine an inference that the defendant's contacts with the forum (Oklahoma) were sufficiently systematic and continuous to support general jurisdiction there. The disclaimer read as follows:

"H & R Block Inc. is a holding company which has no employees" and that "[a]ny goods or services that may be offered for sale through this Web site or a link hereto are offered by the operating subsidiaries of H & R Block, Inc., ... and not by H & R Block Inc."

In light of the disclaimer, the court affirmed the district court's dismissal for lack of jurisdiction.


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