Business | Law

State court orders new ruling in Oneida Nation employment suit





The former executive of a business owned by the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin will get a second chance to plead his case in state court.

John Kroner, who is not a tribal member, was the CEO of the Oneida Seven Generations Corp. from 2001-2008. He sued the tribe in state court after he was terminated from his post.

The Wisconsin 3rd District Court of Appeals ruled that Kroner entered into a contractual relationship with the tribe. That would satisfy one of the Montana v US exceptions for tribal court jurisdiction.

On appeal, the Wisconsin Supreme Court reversed. The decision laid out a two-part test to determine whether a case should be transferred to tribal court.

"A court that is considering transferring a case to a tribal court under the tribal transfer statute must conduct a two-part analysis," the decision stated. "It must make a clear record of its findings and conclusions regarding concurrent jurisdiction, as well as an analysis of all of the rule's relevant factors on the facts presented."

Generally, tribal courts lack civil jurisdiction over non-Indians. In the Montana case, the U.S. Supreme Court laid out two exceptions to the rule.

Get the Story:
Supreme Court sends Oneida case back (Fox 11 News 7/11)

Wisconsin Supreme Court Decision:
John N. Kroner v. Oneida Seven Generations Corporation (July 12, 2012)

Wisconsin Court of Appeals Decision:
John N. Kroner v. Oneida Seven Generations Corporation (June 1, 2011)

Related Stories:
Ex-Oneida Nation executive must take case to tribal court (6/1)