Bloomberg Law

“Jewish-Owned Art Sold in Nazi Era at Center of SCOTUS Case (2)”

By: Kimberly Robinson

“There’s a real tension for the justices in this case, said M.C. Sungaila, who filed a similar case last year that the justices refused to consider.

“We can all agree that this was bad and something should be done about it, but should it be done here?” said Sungaila, a shareholder with Buchalter.”


Open the Floodgates

During Supreme Court oral arguments, the focus will be on those technical questions—at least on the surface, said Dean Nicyper who practices art law at Withers. He said there’s no telling what silent factors might come into play.

Sungaila notes that about a third of Europe’s art changed hands during World War II. So seven decades later, she noted that there’s still a lot of disputed art in the world.

The justices may be concerned that they are going to open the floodgates for bringing similar claims in the U.S.

Nicyper noted that the U.S. has generally been more receptive to these kinds of claims than other countries.

The potential for broad foreign policy implications is why the federal government often sides with foreign nations, Sungaila said.

The U.S. doesn’t “want to be too heavy handed with their allies so they have to do a diplomatic dance,” she said.”

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