Third Party Distribution of Talc Products in Florida Ruled Insufficient to Confer Personal Jurisdiction Over Talc Supplier

FLORIDA — A divided Florida Appellate Court granted a motion to dismiss based on a lack of personal jurisdiction over a cosmetic talc supplier, Imerys Talc America, (Imerys). See Imerys Talc Am., Inc. v. Ricketts, No. 4D17-3815, 2018 WL 6719406 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. Dec. 19, 2018). In opposition to the motion, Plaintiff argued that under the stream-of-commerce doctrine Imerys was subject to specific personal jurisdiction based on its out-of-state sales to a downstream manufacturer, who later distributed their talc containing cosmetic products in the State of Florida. The plaintiff further alleged that Imerys both knew and had intended that its talc supplies would be incorporated in products destined for distribution in Florida. In a 2-1 decision the Fourth District Court granted Imerys a dismissal as it “directed no action or activities in Florida.” Id. at *3. In her dissenting opinion, Justice Carole Taylor explained that Supreme Court precedent was not in conflict with Florida authority finding personal jurisdiction over an upstream supplier where the supplier is aware of third party distribution and marketing of the finished product in the forum state.

You can read the full decision here.