Restatement (First) of the Conflict of Laws

Personal Jurisdiction

  78. Individual Voluntarily Within The State


A state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction over an individual voluntarily within its territory whether he is permanently or only temporarily there.

Illustration:

1. A brings an action against B in a court of state X. B is domiciled in and a citizen of state Y, but is stopping at a hotel in X. In accordance with a statute, process is served upon B by mail, the process being duly received by B at the hotel. The court has jurisdiction over B.

79. Individual Domiciled Within The State


A state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction over an individual domiciled within the state, although he is not present within the state.

Illustrations:

1. A brings an action against B in a court of state X. B is domiciled in X but is in state Y. In accordance with a statute, process is served upon B by handing a summons to B in Y. The court has jurisdiction over B.

2. A brings an action against B in a court of state X. B is domiciled in X, but is in state Y. In accordance with a statute, process is served upon B by delivering a summons at his “usual place of abode” in X to an adult member of his family. The court has jurisdiction over B.

82. Appearance

An appearance by a defendant in an action gives the court jurisdiction over him for all purposes of the action if by the law of the state in which the action is brought the appearance has that effect.

Comment:
a. What law determines effect of special appearance to object to jurisdiction. It is a question determined by the law of the state in which the action is brought whether an appearance entered by a defendant in an action is of such a character as to subject him to the jurisdiction of the court. If, by the law of the state in which an action is brought, an appearance by a defendant solely for the purpose of objecting that the court has no jurisdiction over him, gives the court jurisdiction over the defendant, such an appearance subjects a defendant to the jurisdiction of the court so that the judgment rendered against him after such appearance will be recognized in other states as valid. His appearance in the action entails the consequence of subjecting him to the jurisdiction of the court although he does not intend and expressly states that he does not intend his appearance to have that consequence. By the law of most states, an appearance entered by a defendant solely for the purpose of objecting that the court has no jurisdiction over him does not subject him to the jurisdiction of the court.

b. An appearance entered by a defendant for a purpose other than to object that the court has no jurisdiction over him is usually held to subject him to the jurisdiction of the court.

c. Effect of special appearance to remove to federal court. An appearance in an action brought in a court of a State of the United States for the purpose of presenting to the court a petition for removal of the action to a federal court does not give jurisdiction over him either to the State court or to the federal court.

94. Decree To Be Carried Out In Another State


A state can exercise jurisdiction through its courts to make a decree directing a party subject to the jurisdiction of the court to do an act in another state, provided such act is not contrary to the law of the state in which it is to be performed.

Illustrations:

2. A court of equity is asked to enjoin a defendant from so using his property in a foreign state as, by the law of that state, to constitute a nuisance. The court has jurisdiction to make the order.

96. Enjoining Acts In Another State


A state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction to forbid a party, who is subject to its jurisdiction, to do an act in another state.

Illustrations:

1. A brings suit in state X against B to enjoin the performance in state Y of a copyrighted play. The court may issue the injunction.

2. A brings suit against B in state X to restrain B from repeatedly trespassing on A's land in state Y. The court may issue the injunction.

97. Decree Affecting Thing In Another State


A state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction to order or to forbid the doing of an act within the state, although to carry out the decree may involve doing an act or affecting a thing in another state.

Comment:
a. A court will frequently order a party who is subject to its jurisdiction to execute and deliver a deed of land situated in another state.

Illustrations:


2. A brings suit against B in Illinois for specific performance of a contract to convey land in Iowa, and B is served with process. The court may order B to make the conveyance.

b. When jurisdiction ordinarily not exercised. If land can be transferred only by an act done by the defendant within the state where the land is, the court of another state will ordinarily not order him to transfer the land (see 94, Comment b).


d. An injunction may be granted against doing an act within the state even though the parties enjoined can obey the injunction only by acting in another state or causing an act to be done there.

Illustration:

8. By building a dam in state X, B wrongfully floods A's land in state Y. A files a bill in Y to enjoin B from flooding his land and B is served with process within Y. The court may grant the injunction against flooding the land although it can be obeyed only by removing the dam in X.

98. Extent Of Jurisdiction Over Things

[A] state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction over things within its territory.

101. Jurisdiction Over Land

A state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction over land situated within the territory of the state, although a person owning or claiming an interest in the land is not personally subject to the jurisdiction of the state.

Illustrations:

4. In accordance with a statute of state X, A, claiming to own land in X, brings an action to quiet title. B, an adverse claimant, is not subject to the jurisdiction of X. The court may bar the claim of B.

6. A contracts to sell to B land situated in state X. B brings a suit in X for specific performance. A is not subject to the jurisdiction of X. Under a statute of X allowing it to do so, the court may make an order vesting title to the land in B.

8. Under a statute of state X, a proceeding is brought in X to sell land situated in X for nonpayment of taxes. A, the owner of the land, is not subject to the jurisdiction of X. The court may order A's interest in the land sold.


102. Jurisdiction Over Chattel

[A] state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction over a chattel within the territory of the state, though a person owning or claiming the chattel or an interest in the chattel is not subject to the jurisdiction of the state.

105. Continuation Of Jurisdiction

If, in an action, a court obtains jurisdiction over a thing, that jurisdiction continues throughout all subsequent proceedings which arise out of the original cause of action until the court voluntarily surrenders jurisdiction over it.

Comment:
a. If a court has once obtained any jurisdiction over a thing, that jurisdiction is not lost by the wrongful removal of the thing from the state.

Illustration:

1. An action is brought by A against B in a court of state X and a horse in X is attached. B wrongfully takes the horse from the possession of the sheriff and removes it to state Y. C brings an action against B in a court of Y and attaches the horse. The court of X still has jurisdiction over the horse.

106. Application Of Things To Payment Of Claims

[A] state can exercise through its courts jurisdiction to apply to the satisfaction of a claim, interests in things subject to the jurisdiction of the state, belonging to the person against whom the claim is asserted, although the state has no jurisdiction over him.

Comment:
a. The jurisdiction stated in this Section is commonly exercised through a proceeding begun by an attachment or by a bill in equity. A judgment rendered in such a proceeding is effective solely against interests in tangible things which are within the state. It is not effective against interests in tangible things not within the state, nor is it effective to impose a personal liability upon the person against whom the claim is asserted, if he is not subject to the jurisdiction of the state.

Illustration:

1. A brings an action against B for debt in a court of state X. B is not subject to the jurisdiction of X, but a horse in X belonging to B is attached. B fails to appear. The court has jurisdiction to render a judgment under which the horse may be sold on execution; but no other property of B can be sold and the judgment does not impose a personal liability upon B.

c. Necessity of attachment before judgment. This jurisdiction cannot be exercised except by a proceeding in which a thing is seized or a claim is directed against the thing.

Illustration:

2. A brings an action against B for debt in a court of state X. B is not subject to the jurisdiction of X, and no land or chattel of B is attached. B fails to appear. Judgment is given against B by default. Execution is levied on a horse of B in X and the horse is sold to C. C acquires no title to the horse.