Hassler v. Shaw

Decision Date10 May 1926
Docket NumberNo. 278,278
Citation271 U.S. 195,46 S.Ct. 479,70 L.Ed. 900
PartiesR. H. HASSLER, Inc., v. SHAW
CourtU.S. Supreme Court

plaintiff in error.

Mr. A. S. Harby, of Sumter, S. C., for defendant in error.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 196-197 intentionally omitted] Mr. Justice HOLMES delivered the opinion of the Court.

This is a writ of error upon a judgment in personam against the plaintiff in error on the ground that there never was any valid service of process against it and that therefore there was no jurisdiction in the Court. The writ was transferred from the Circuit Court of Appeals 3 F.(2d) 605 to this Court, the case being one in which the jurisdiction of the District Court and that alone was in issue within the meaning of section 238 of the Judicial Code (Comp. St. § 1215), under the decisions in Shepard v. Adams, 168 U. S. 618, 18 S. Ct. 214, 42 L. Ed. 602, Remington v. Central Pacific R. R. Co., 198 U. S. 95, 25 S. Ct. 577, 49 L. Ed. 959, and Board of Trade v. Hammond Elevator Co., 198 U. S. 424, 25 S. Ct. 740, 49 L. Ed. 1111, and therefore not open to review in the Circuit Court of Appeals. The Carlo Poma, 255 U. S. 219, 41 S. Ct. 309, 65 L. Ed. 594.

The suit is for an alleged breach of contract and was brought in a Court of the State of South Carolina against a corporation of Indiana. The only personal service was by delivery of copies of the summons and complaint in Indiana, on May 12, 1919, as the record shows. An attachment was levied on property alleged to belong to the defendant and within the State. The record further shows that in the same month the defendant moved to set aside the service, and that the motion was refused, without prejudice to the defendant's right to set up the special defense in its answer, this being a right clearly given by the statutes of South Carolina. The case then was removed to the District Court of the United States and subsequently in September of the same year an answer was filed alleging the above-mentioned motion and order, and setting up that the Court had no jurisdiction because the defendant was an indiana corporation doing no business and having no property within the State upon which attachment could be levied so as to give the Court jurisdiction, and also, reserving its right to object to the jurisdiction, pleading to the merits. In March, 1921, an amended complaint was filed alleging that the defendant had property in the State and setting forth the cause of action. The defendant answered denying the jurisdiction as before and denying that it had property within the State, and saving its right to object to the jurisdiction, again answering to the merits. With regard to the attachment it is enough to say that a third party intervened, claimed the goods and finally got judgment for them. But before that happened there was a trial on the merits between the plaintiff and defendant and a verdict for the plaintiff in 1921. The motion for judgment was delayed until May 1924. In the same month the defendant moved to set aside the verdict and to dismiss the complaint for want of jurisdiction. The judge then sitting thought that the question of jurisdiction should be left to the decision of the Appellate Court and ordered judgment. A motion to vacate the judgment was overruled on the same ground.

Thus it is manifest that the record shows a judgment against a defendant never served with process and without any attachment of property-a...

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43 cases
  • Freeman v. Bee Machine Co
    • United States
    • U.S. Supreme Court
    • June 1, 1943
    ...257, 258, 36 S.Ct. 585, 60 L.Ed. 987. 5 Wabash Western Ry. v. Brow, 164 U.S. 271, 17 S.Ct. 126, 41 L.Ed. 431; Hassler, Inc., v. Shaw, 271 U.S. 195, 46 S.Ct. 479, 70 L.Ed. 900; Employers Reinsurance Corp. v. Bryant, 299 U.S. 374, 57 S.Ct. 273, 81 L.Ed. 289. 6 It is clear that the Massachuset......
  • Kenny v. Alaska Airlines
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — Southern District of California
    • June 13, 1955
    ...this court. Employers Reinsurance Corp. v. Bryant, 1937, 299 U.S. 374, 381-382, 57 S.Ct. 273, 81 L.Ed. 289; Hassler, Inc., v. Shaw, 1926, 271 U.S. 195, 46 S.Ct. 479, 70 L.Ed. 900; Cyc. of Fed. Procedure, 3rd Ed. § 3.11, p. The present action was commenced in this court under its diversity j......
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    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — First Circuit
    • August 27, 1928
  • Knutson v. Allis-Chalmers Corp.
    • United States
    • U.S. District Court — District of Nevada
    • February 23, 2005
    ...431 (1896); Employers Reins. Corp. v. Bryant, 299 U.S. 374, 376, 57 S.Ct. 273, 274, 81 L.Ed. 289 (1937); Hassler v. Shaw, 271 U.S. 195, 199-200, 46 S.Ct. 479, 480, 70 L.Ed. 900 (1926). See also 14 C Charles Alan Wright et al., Federal Practice and Procedure: Jurisdiction 3d § 3738 (3d ed.19......
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