–From Robert Campbell, Pacific Coast University McGeorge School of Law, Date of event: 2002
A funny Socratic moment occurred in our California Community Property course, when a classmate was briefing Boggs v. Boggs 520 U.S. 833 (1997).
Parties to the litigation were Sandra Boggs, widow of Isaac Boggs, and Isaac’s sons, Thomas F. Boggs, Harry M. Boggs, and David B. Boggs, who were the offspring of Issac Boggs and his first wife, Dorothy Boggs, also deceased.
This case held that ERISA preempts a state’s community-property law which might otherwise allow a non-participant spouse to make a testamentary transfer of an interest in an undistributed pension plan.
After an analysis of the facts, issues, rules and applications, our classmate was getting to the end of his recitation and declared, with relief: “In conclusion, Boggs won!”