Law

Turtle Talk: Commentary on Oneida Nation employment decision





"The Wisconsin Supreme Court had long been a leader, perhaps reluctantly, in developing excellent tribal-state court relationships dating back to its important Teague decision nearly ten years ago. The Teague decision led to the Teague protocol, which authorizes state court judges to transfer certain cases arising in Indian country. The last review of the protocol resulted in a 4-3 split amongst the Wisconsin justices, reaffirming the protocol, even for some nonconsenting nonmembers, but with very skeptical dissenters arguing that Tribal jurisdiction over nonmembers was simply untenable on its face for a host of reasons apparently inspired by Justice Souter’s concurrence in Nevada v. Hicks. Even so, for a PL 280 state to voluntarily recognize concurrent tribal court jurisdiction was an important development.

Yesterday’s Kroner’s decision undercut the Teague protocol without eliminating it. Four Justices in the split decision would hold that Kroner, a nonmember suing the corporation for wrongful discharge, has what amounts to an absolute veto when it comes to tribal jurisdiction. "

Get the Story:
Commentary on the Wisconsin Supreme Court’s Kroner Decision (Turtle Talk 7/12)

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:
State court orders new ruling in Oneida Nation employment suit (7/11)
Ex-Oneida Nation executive must take case to tribal court (6/1)