So, since I'm waiting for the book to arrive, and feeling bad that I am reading a novel, and knowing that the book covers one case and its procedures, I thought I'd research the case and write something in order to (1) familiarize myself with it and (2) build up some typing speed.
The long and tall of it is that federal courts have to apply state law in cases where diversity jurisdiction applies. Now what is diversity jurisdiction, you ask? Well, let's see if I have to ask LP for my money back because I didn't learn nothing.
Diversity jurisdiction applies when both the plaintiff and the defendant come from two different jurisdictions: eg, one is from New York and the other is from Idaho. Now, who decides where the case is heard and which state law is applied is case-dependent. If the infraction occurs in NY vs the P by the D, then the P can sue D in NY and NY laws applies. P has the choice of making it a federal or state issue but if he decides on federal court, that court has to apply applicable state law and cannot create federal common law.
Think I got it! At least I got diversity jurisdiction!