Colorado Mills, LLC v. SunOpta Grains and Foods Inc.
In an arbitration proceeding between Respondent SunOpta Grains and Foods Inc. (SunOpta) and Colorado Mills, LLC, an arbitrator, at SunOpta's request, issued subpoenas to petitioners SK Food International and Adams Vegetable Oil, Inc. SK Food and Adams were not parties to the underlying arbitration. Neither company was incorporated in Colorado, was registered as a foreign corporation in Colorado, or maintained a principal office in Colorado. The subpoenas, which requested business records, were served on SK Food and Adams at their places of business in California and North Dakota. When SK Food and Adams refused to comply with the arbitration subpoenas, SunOpta asked the district court to enforce them. The district court issued an order enforcing the subpoenas.In response, SK Food and Adams filed a petition for a rule to show cause, which the Supreme Court issued. The nonparties appealed the district court's order enforcing the subpoenas. The Supreme Court held that Colorado courts, as a matter of state sovereignty, have no authority to enforce civil subpoenas against out-of-state nonparties. Accordingly, the Court vacated the district court's enforcement order, and remanded case back to the district court for further proceedings. View "Colorado Mills, LLC v. SunOpta Grains and Foods Inc." on Justia Law