American Insurance Association v. Garamendi, 539 U.S. 396, 6 (2003)

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Cite as: 539 U. S. 396 (2003)

Opinion of the Court

Frank Kaplan argued the cause for respondent. With him on the brief were Jesse J. Contreras, Larry G. Simon, Andrew W. Stroud, Michael D. Ramsey, and Leslie Tick.*

Justice Souter delivered the opinion of the Court.

California's Holocaust Victim Insurance Relief Act of 1999 (HVIRA or Act), Cal. Ins. Code Ann. §§ 13800-13807 (West Cum. Supp. 2003), requires any insurer doing business in that State to disclose information about all policies sold in Europe between 1920 and 1945 by the company itself or any one "related" to it. The issue here is whether HVIRA interferes with the National Government's conduct of foreign relations. We hold that it does, with the consequence that the state statute is preempted.



The Nazi Government of Germany engaged not only in genocide and enslavement but theft of Jewish assets, includ*Briefs of amici curiae urging reversal were filed for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. by Kim Heebner Price and Robin S. Conrad; for the Federal Republic of Germany by Roger M. Witten; for the Government of Switzerland by Stephan E. Becker; and for Mitsubishi Materials Corp. et al. by Walter Dellinger, John H. Beisner, David M. Balabanian, Margaret K. Pfeiffer, Arne D. Wagner, and Paul J. Hall.

Briefs of amici curiae urging affirmance were filed for the State of California et al. by Bill Lockyer, Attorney General of California, Manuel Medeiros, State Solicitor General, Richard M. Frank, Chief Assistant Attorney General, J. Matthew Rodriquez, Senior Assistant Attorney General, and Daniel L. Siegel, Supervising Deputy Attorney General, and by the Attorneys General for their respective jurisdictions as follows: William H. Pryor, Jr., of Alabama, G. Steven Rowe of Maine, J. Joseph Curran, Jr., of Maryland, Thomas F. Reilly of Massachusetts, Mike Hatch of Minnesota, Brian Sandoval of Nevada, Peter C. Harvey of New Jersey, Eliot Spitzer of New York, Jim Petro of Ohio, Anabelle Rodríguez of Puerto Rico, Greg Abbott of Texas, and Christine O. Gregoire of Washington; for Bet Tzedek Legal Services et al. by Gregory R. Smith, Elizabeth K. Penfil, David A. Lash, and Martin Mendelsohn; for the National Association of Insurance Commissioners by Ross S. Myers; and for Representative Henry A. Waxman et al. by Kenneth Chesebro.


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