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The case  or controversy clause is found in Article III, Section 2, Clause 1 of the Constitution.  The text of the clause provides that the federal courts can only hear certain types of cases. For examples, federal courts can hear cases where the United States is a party or where the case is between citizens of different states (i.e., diversity jurisdiction).   Courts interpret the  clause to also mean that the federal courts should only decide cases that are ripe for decision.  Courts should decline to adjudicate cases that are not yet ripe or are now moot. The courts will not render advisory opinions.  There must be a plaintiff who has suffered an injury caused by the defendant and the injury can be remedied by the court.

The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority;—to all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public ministers and Consuls;—to all Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction;—to Controversies to which the United States shall be a Party;—to Controversies between two or more States;—between a State and Citizens of another State;—between Citizens of different States;—between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of different States, and between a State, or the Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects.

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