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On May 1, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Venezuela v. Helmerich & Payne International Drilling Co. that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act’s (FSIA) expropriation exception applies only if the property at issue was “taken in violation of international law” and that a nonfrivolous-argument standard is inconsistent with the FSIA. The case concerned a claim by an American parent company and its Venezuelan subsidiary that Venezuela had unlawfully expropriated the subsidiary’s oil rigs when it nationalized them, with Venezuela arguing that its sovereign immunity barred U.S. courts from having jurisdiction over the matter. In regard to the parent company’s claim, the District of Columbia Circuit Court “decided only whether the plaintiffs might have a nonfrivolous expropriation claim, making clear that, under its standard, a nonfrivolous argument would be sufficient to bring a case within the scope of the exception.” The Supreme Court reversed and held that “a party’s nonfrivolous, but ultimately incorrect, argument that property was taken in violation of international law is insufficient to confer jurisdiction. Rather, state and federal courts can maintain jurisdiction to hear the merits of a case only if they find that the property in which the party claims to hold rights was indeed ‘property taken in violation of international law.’” The Court also noted that “a court should decide the foreign sovereign’s immunity defense ‘[a]t the threshold’ of the action” and that while the parties agreed to the facts of the case in this instance, making it a purely legal question, if a decision “requires resolution of factual disputes, the court will have to resolve those disputes, but it should do so as near to the outset of the case as is reasonably possible.”