Personal Jurisdiction and the Scope of Electric Tobacconist Contracts
Electric Tobacconists is really a small privately owned cigarette distributor in america. It is one of many small distributors of electric cigarettes. Since the Pre-marketsation Tobacco Authorization deadline of Sept 9th, 2021, Electric Tobacconist USA no more carries any products or brands that are conforming to the FDA PMTA regulations. There is a post written by a person who claimed to be a former employee stating that Electric Tobacconist was among the companies in the tobacco industry that was most difficult to sell cigarettes to. The entire article can be viewed in the bottom of this article.
Now, we have an opportunity to check out the events which took place prior to the Electric Tobacconist closing down. On or around Apr 3, 2021, a class action suit was filed against several companies involved in the electronic cigarette market. The class action suit was brought by a group of individuals who were not satisfied with what sort of electronic cigarette market had been regulated. At that point with time there have been no federal laws that applied to the industry. There was no chance to obtain personal jurisdiction over the companies involved in the cigarette manufacturing and distribution.
In that same month there have been reports of Electronic Cigarette Vending Machine Dwindling. It had been reported by the Associated Press that the sale of non-nicotine flavored e-juice products, was now forbidden by the e-juice manufacturers because they believed that it could hurt their profits. This is where we see the first contract between an e-juice manufacturer and an e Tobaccconist. The maker wanted to distribute Nicotine-containing liquids to smokers within 15 business days, while the e tobacconist was ready to supply them with e-juice in a shorter period of time.
The Electric Tobacconist decided to the terms, the e-juice company provided them making use of their samples of e-juices and within 15 business days, the manufacturer supplied them with the Nicotine-rich liquids they needed. This contract and the next dispute arose from a difference in timing. The Electric Tobacconist waited an extra fifteen days to put their second order. The e-juice manufacturer’s timing for placing their second order was also different than that of the e Tobaccconists.
There are two primary services contained in a Tobacco Product Warranty. They are: Quality Service and Customer Reliability. The word quality service encompasses the complete package that comes with the electric tobacconist. This would include but not limited by, the packaging, the Nicotine-filled liquids which were to be sold, customer support, the product warranty, the return policy, shipping, billing and payment arrangements.
The dispute between your Electric Tobacconist and the e-juice company stemmed from the e-juice company requiring that their customers buy a Nicotine-infused item, such as for example, gum, a pipe or a lollipop, using a charge card. This requirement was to be fulfilled by the customer using an “authorized user” id. The manufacturer required this verification and requested that this proof be presented at time of checkout. On the night of the initial day of using these products, the customer pointed out that the e-juice was not made available to him and that he had not been in a position to purchase them. He subsequently informed the manager of the e-juice company he had received two calls from the electric tobacconist and he was now calling back all of them individually. On the next day, he was calling both the first and second manager and that, on the third day, he was calling the third manager and that at that time, he was told he could purchase his Nicotine-infused items at the store.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) is an “applicable law” body. This body, having regard to the “relevance” of the products and services included in commerce, specifically to the subject-matter of the goods and services contained in the transaction, has issued consistent rules and rulings with respect to the scope of the “exclusivity” rule in the Uniform Commercial Code. The Electric Tobacconist didn’t file suit against the e-juice company at that time because he did not believe that the e-juice company had breached the exclusive rights provided to him beneath the Uniform Commercial Code; he didn’t contend that the e-juice company had violated any other applicable law, like the rules of federal jurisdiction, like the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”). The key reason why the Electric Tobacconist preferred to file this suit contrary to the e-juice company was because, in his view, the e-juice company had violated the Anti-Trust laws, including the St. Louis Circuit Puff Bar Court of Appeals (” Circuit”), which had previously ordered the company to cover the Electric Tobacconist and/or his franchisees a large-scale judgment tax for circumventing the legitimate authority of the franchisor, namely, the franchisor’s direct seller, including the e-juice manufacturer.
In relevant circumstances, the dismissal of the complaint will need to have been using the grounds that, the plaintiff had not been a celebration to the contract, and had not been a consumer of the product sold by the franchisor. For purposes of assessing the likelihood of an abuse of personal jurisdiction, we think it might be more appropriate to consider if the conduct complained of occurred within the context of the relationship between the franchisor and its franchisees. In light of this analysis, it appears that the dismissal of the complaint should have been upheld if the plaintiff had been a celebration to the contract. It is unlikely that this argument could have been considered by the low court. We concur.