Supreme Court Denies Petition in Taylor Case

Court OrderToday, the United States Supreme Court denied the petition for writ of certiorari in Taylor v. Yee. Taylor is the long running California case which temporarily shut down the California system and resulted in the two-report process. In denying the petition, Justice Alito, with Justice Thomas joining, concurring in the denial wrote that the convoluted history of the case made it a poor case to review the due process requirements when a state takes property.

However, Alito may have just asked for a new unclaimed property case to be brought before the Court by saying "the constitutionality of current state escheat laws is a question that may merit review in a future case." Alito specifically mentioned Delaware's "blanket newspaper notification," perhaps signaling to the parties in the Delaware wrongful escheat case brought by foreign shareholders that it could be a better case for the Court.

"This trend - combining shortened escheat periods with minimal notification procedures - raises important due process concerns. As advances in technology make it easier and easier to identify and locate property owners, many States appear to be doing less and less to meet their constitutional obligation to provide adequate notice before escheating private property. Cash-strapped States undoubtedly have a real interest in taking advantage of truly abandoned property to shore up state budgets. But they also have an obligation to return property when its owner can be located. To do that, States must employ notification procedures designed to provide the pre-escheat notice the Constitution requires."

See Also:
Recent Litigation Spotlights Due Diligence Efforts (or Lack Thereof)
Battle Royale: Pennsylvania v. Delaware
Nine Year Audit Leads to Federal Lawsuit