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Civil Procedure I
St. Johns University School of Law
Alexander, Vincent C.

Three Elements: all must be satisfied to render a valid judgment

Personal Jurisdiction over D or D’s Property (in what state/in what forum can I sue the D)?
Notice to D; service of process
Subject Matter Jurisdiction: court has the power to adjudicate this type of controversy

Does the court have power over the D to render a valid Judgment?

a) Are D’s contacts with the state systematic and continuous such that he can be sued for any claim regardless of whether the cause of action arises out of his contacts in the state? OR
b) Was the D physically served in the state, did he consent, or is he domiciled in the state?

2. Analysis for SPECIFIC JURISDICTION/Analyzing Personal Jurisdiction for Absent Ds
a) Look for Long Arm of particular forum and analyze language
b) Does statute apply to the facts? Statutory interpretationècase precedent, legislative history
i) If it does not apply to the facts, never need to get into Due Process standards
ii) If statute does apply to facts THEN:
c) Does the statute satisfy Due Process as it has been applied to the current set of facts? Not about statute being constitutional or unconstitutional; rather is it being applied constitutionally on these facts
i) Two Part test:
(1) Purposeful availment
(2) Fair and Reasonable?


GENERAL In Personam Jurisdiction: Does the court have power over the D even if the cause of action does not arise out of his contacts in the forum state?

a) Bases for Individuals:
i) Presence: Was the D physically served in the forum state? (Pennoyer);

(1) Debate: transient presenceèminimum contacts applies? No majority
(a) Minimum contacts applies to all assertions of jurisdiction: Did the D purposefully avail himself to the forum state; was his presence: “voluntary, intentional, and knowing”?
(i) Hypo: airplane service of process;
(b) minimum contacts applies only to absent Ds

(2) Exceptions to presence theory:
(a) Fraud
(b) Immunity Doctrine

ii) Consent: Did the D consent to jurisdiction either expressly or impliedly?
(1) Examples:
(a) Voluntarily appearance, or appoint agent for service of process
(b) Waiver: If D doesn’t object or fails to make a timely motion to dismiss at the outsetèwaives defense indefinitely
(c) In Advance; consent by contract, choice of forum clause;

(2) Exception:
(a) Immunity Doctrine

iii) Domiciliary/“home base” in forum state: Is the D domiciled in the forum state?
(1) Only one state of domicile possible for individuals
(2) Requirements:
(a) Maintain residence and
(b) Intend to maintain as principle home for indefinite future UNTIL
(c) New domicile

b) Bases for Corporations
(1) Presence: Is the D corporation doing business IN the state that is systematic and continuous?
(a) Considerations: Maintaining an office, regular soliciting, shipping;
(i) Not enough: (Helicopteros) serving transient agents; purchases for substantial sums and one business meetings/brief presence; sending personnel for training; acceptance of checks drawn form bank in forum state; (BUT may be enough for specific jurisdiction if cause of action arises out of activities…); doing business with the state

(2) Consent: serving in-state agents; state charter of incorporation or license; choice of forum clauseè treated as consent (choice of law as a factor to consider)

c) Internet:
i) Presence: “systematic and continuous activity”; “boots on the ground” better test

SPECIFIC In Personam Jurisdiction/Absent Defendants:

Does the forum allow for service of process outside the state for this D in this situation?
e.g. Does the cause of action arise out of or relate to D’s contact with the forum?

Analysis: Look to state long arm è applies to facts? è then if applies, satisfies minimum contacts?

Calder “Effects test”: must target forum state (purposeful acts) and have effects there.

(1) E.g. Revell: No sufficient contacts with forum state; no purposeful acts directed at the forum: Article not about Tx, Ds didn’t even know where P lived website merely a medium where the alleged libel occurred; website beamed it everywhere, not specifically in Texas

1) Does a state statute allow for in rem jurisdiction?
2) Minimum Contacts standard applies to all in rem: purposeful activity must be related to P’s cause of action; mere presence of property not enough

a) “True in Rem”
i) with respect to property binding on the entire world; “notice” to entire world; concerns ownership of the land; e.g. government condemnation of land; admiralty law

b) Quasi in Rem 1
i) P’s cause of action is based on interests in property; a
ii) Court asserts personal jurisdiction over D by attaching property at the outset of the lawsuit
iii) presumptively satisfies Due Process because cause of action arises out of contacts
iv) Marriage: “marital status” treated as a thing “in

er; (resolving dispute and providing a forum for redress)
iv) Interstate (social policy)and International interests re substantive law (might be contrary to the interests of courts in the foreign nations; might hurt international relations)

II. NOTICE and Opportunity to Be Heard:

1. Did service of process comply with the rules of the state court in which the D was served, the rules of the state court in which the district court sits, or the FRCP? AND

2. Was the service reasonably calculated under all circumstances to apprise the interested parties of the pendency of the action and afford them an opportunity to present their objections?

1) Due Process Requirements:
a) notice must be reasonably calculated under all circumstances to apprise interested parties of the pendency of the action and afford them an opportunity to present their objections, Mullane trustees
i) Personal Service: most adequate form of notice, but due process doesn’t require the best notice, just the most reasonable notice under the circumstances
ii) Newspaper publication may be the best, reasonable method under the circumstances for those whose name and identity whereabouts are unknown
iii) no impracticable burdens; (no need to translate all summonses, no need to find out if all Ds are mentally competentè but safety valves built in
(1) Safety valves built into system for default judgments based on lack of notice:
(a) opportunities to vacate judgment for good excuse; mentally incompetent person, doesn’t speak English; guardian appointed,

b) State requirements: set of specific rules in every state

2) Federal rules Rule 4
a) action commenced with filing
b) Rule 4 Summons: service on INDIVIDUALS generally:
i) What 4(b):
(1) upon filing with courtèsummons must be served together with copy of complaint
ii) Who can serve process 4(c):
(1) a person who is not a party and who is at least 18 years old
iii) Where 4(e):
(1) In a judicial district of the U.S.;
iv) How 4(e):