In Owen Equipment & Erection Co. v. Kroger the Supreme Court last Term addressed for the first time the permissible scope of ancillary jurisdiction under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Although the Court approved using the doctrine in the situations to which it has most commonly been applied, it disapproved applying the doctrine to a plaintiff's claim against a nondiverse third-party defendant. This Article suggests that the line drawn by the Court in Kroger is likely to be particularly mischievous and is inconsistent with the justifications of fairness, convenience, and economy generally advanced to support the doctrine of ancillary jurisdiction. Moreover, the Court's indication that a clear congressional directive in the basic diversity statute required this outcome adds to Snyder v. Harris and Zahn v. International Paper Co. another unhappy episode in the shell game whose aim seems to be reducing the federal caseload by attributing to Congress a nonexistent, but perhaps desirable, intention.
John H. Garvey, Limits of Ancillary Jurisdiction, 57 TEX. L. REV. 697 (1979).