Yahoo Inc. v. LICRA

US court ruling on enforceability of French judgment
Document type
Court Decision

This case is the US follow-on litigation to a French court’s order, in 2000, for US search engine and portal Yahoo to restrict access to Nazi memorabilia auctions and materials. Yahoo maintained that the French order was improper, but also adopted a new, allegedly voluntary, global policy largely complying with it. French plaintiffs represented that they were happy with Yahoo’s compliance and would not seek further enforcement. However, Yahoo filed suit in U.S. District Court (N.D. Cal.) for declaratory judgment that the French Court's order was not recognizable or enforceable in the U.S.

In two lower court rulings, the District Court determined that it had jurisdiction over the case, and that the First Amendment precluded US enforcement. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reviewed the ruling, and then ruled a second time en banc. The en banc decision , which was the final decision in the case, was divided and procedurally complex. Out of eleven judges,

- 8 judges found Personal Jurisdiction

- 3 Judges would dismiss for lack of Personal Jurisdiction

- 3 Judges would dismiss for lack of Ripeness

This created a 6 judge majority favoring dismissal, though on different grounds. The case was accordingly dismissed. Yahoo sought Supreme Court review, but was denied. The 8 judge ruling in favor of personal jurisdiction, however, officially has precedential value.

Topic, claim, or defense
Hate Speech
Freedom of Expression
Document type
Court Decision
Issuing entity
Appellate Domestic Court
Type of service provider
Search Engine or Index
OSP obligation considered
Block or Remove
Monitor or Filter
Type of law
General effect on immunity