Alabama Getaway

Mississippi law allows a “bad faith” claim relating to handling of workers’ compensation; Alabama law does not.  Williams, a Mississippi resident, was injured in Mississippi while working for an Alabama resident contract.  Williams v. Liberty Mutual, No. 11-60818 (Jan. 28, 2014).  The Fifth Circuit reversed the choice-of-law question, finding that section 145 of the Restatement (governing tort claims) applied rather than other provisions for contract claims.  Under that framework, Mississippi would give particular weight to the place of injury, and thus apply Mississippi law. The opinion highlights the importance of the threshold issue of properly characterizing a claim before beginning the actual choice-of-law analysis.

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