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Concordia Partners, LLC v. Pick

United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit

June 24, 2015

CONCORDIA PARTNERS, LLC, Plaintiff, Appellee,
v.
MARCELLE PICK ET AL., Defendants, Appellants

APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF MAINE. Hon. George Z. Singal, U.S. District Judge.

James D. Poliquin, with whom Norman, Hanson, & DeTroy, LLC was on brief, for appellants.

Daniel A. Nuzzi, with whom David B. Bertoni, Stacy O. Stitham, and Brann & Isaacson were on brief, for appellee.

Before Thompson, Lipez, and Barron, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 278

BARRON, Circuit Judge.

This appeal concerns an interlocutory challenge to a preliminary injunction in a case that sits at the intersection of state contract law and federal copyright law. But we do not reach the merits. That is because a state trial court entered the preliminary injunction before the case was removed to federal court, and the federal court did not then adopt or otherwise rule on the state court's order before the filing of this appeal. We thus dismiss this appeal for want of appellate jurisdiction, as we hold that there is no interlocutory order from a federal district court for us to review.

I.

The dispute over the preliminary injunction has its origins in the breakdown of the business relationship between Concordia Partners, a Maine limited liability company that markets health care products, and Marcelle Pick, one of its former independent contractors. Concordia and Pick had collaborated on a women's health website since 2001, but by 2013 the relationship had soured. After the breakdown, Concordia sought a preliminary injunction in state court that would forbid Pick from publishing any company-owned content on her new website. The Maine Superior Court granted Concordia's preliminary injunction motion and denied Pick's subsequent motion to reconsider that order.

Pick then removed the state case to federal court.[1] Before the District Court ruled on the merits of the state court injunction or issued any order enforcing, dissolving, or modifying the injunction, Pick filed a notice of interlocutory appeal. Pick now asks us to review the state court's grant of the preliminary injunction and its denial of her motion to reconsider. But we lack jurisdiction to do so.[2]

II.

Congress has vested the federal courts of appeals with jurisdiction over appeals from interlocutory orders only " of the district courts of the United States, the United States District Court for the District of the Canal Zone, the District Court of Guam, and the District Court of the Virgin Islands, or of the judges thereof." 28 U.S.C. § 1292(a)(1). The notice of interlocutory appeal filed in the District Court below, however, does not cite any " order[] of the district court[]" as the basis for the

Page 279

present appeal. Id. The notice instead appeals from the Maine Superior Court's two orders regarding ...


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