White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, No. 20891.

CourtSupreme Court of South Dakota
Writing for the CourtSTEELE, Circuit.
Citation2000 SD 34,606 N.W.2d 926
Decision Date08 March 2000
Docket NumberNo. 20891.
PartiesDaron WHITE EAGLE, as Special Administrator for the Estate of Darrell Thomas White Eagle, deceased, Plaintiff and Appellee, v. CITY OF FORT PIERRE, South Dakota, A Political Subdivision, as Employer and Entity, and Kevin Steever, in his capacity As Chief of Police of Fort Pierre, Jointly and Severally and in Their Individual Capacities, Defendants and Appellants.

606 N.W.2d 926
2000 SD 34

Daron WHITE EAGLE, as Special Administrator for the Estate of Darrell Thomas White Eagle, deceased, Plaintiff and Appellee,
v.
CITY OF FORT PIERRE, South Dakota, A Political Subdivision, as Employer and Entity, and Kevin Steever, in his capacity As Chief of Police of Fort Pierre, Jointly and Severally and in Their Individual Capacities, Defendants and Appellants

No. 20891.

Supreme Court of South Dakota.

Considered on Briefs November 29, 1999.

Decided March 8, 2000.


606 N.W.2d 927
Robin L. Zephier of Abourezk Law Firm, Rapid City, South Dakota, Attorneys for plaintiff and appellee

Karla L. Engle and Thomas H. Harmon of Tieszen Law Office, Pierre, South Dakota, Attorneys for defendants and appellants.

STEELE, Circuit Judge.

[¶ 1.] The trial court denied City of Fort Pierre's (City) amended motion to dismiss, concluding that service of process on City was effective because there was substantial compliance with the requirements of SDCL 15-6-4(d). This Court granted City's petition for allowance of an intermediate appeal. We reverse.

FACTS

[¶ 2.] Darrell Thomas White Eagle died on or about June 26, 1995. Daron White Eagle, (White Eagle) as Special Administrator for his father's estate, filed a summons and complaint in circuit court dated June 19, 1997. The complaint named as defendants City, Kevin Steever in his official capacity as City's chief of police, and Steever individually. White Eagle alleged that Steever and City negligently or intentionally caused the injury and death of decedent. White Eagle further alleged a cause of action pursuant to 42 USC 1983, due to purported violations of the Fourth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments by City. Finally, White Eagle asserted entitlement to punitive damages.

[¶ 3.] The summons, dated June 19, 1997, was served upon Mary Ellen Garrett, City's finance officer, on June 24, 1997. On July 18, 1997, City filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds of improper service of process and expiration of the statute of limitations period. City argued that as a first class municipality, service could be made only by serving the mayor or any alderman, and that none of those officials were served within the permitted period. The trial court denied City's motion. It

606 N.W.2d 928
determined there was substantial compliance with the statutory requirement concerning the service of process. City appeals

STANDARD OF REVIEW

[¶ 4.] "`Our standard of review of a trial court's grant or denial of a motion to dismiss is the same as the review of a motion for summary judgment—is the pleader entitled to judgment as a matter of law?'" Risse v. Meeks, 1998 SD 112, ¶ 10, 585 N.W.2d 875, 876 (quoting Estate of Billings v. Deadwood Congregation of Jehovah Witnesses, 506 N.W.2d 138, 140 (S.D.1993)). "This Court reviews challenges to court jurisdiction de novo." Id. (citing State v. Vandermay, 478 N.W.2d 289, 290 (S.D.1991)).

ANALYSIS

[¶ 5.] While several issues were raised on appeal, matters not determined by the trial court are not appropriate for appellate review. See Schull Construction Co. v. Koenig, 80 S.D. 224, 229, 121 N.W.2d 559, 561 (1963). Therefore, we limit our decision to determining if the trial court erred in finding that service of process upon City's finance officer constituted substantial compliance with SDCL 15-6-4(d).

[¶ 6.] In Wagner v. Truesdell, 1998 SD 9, ¶ 9, 574 N.W.2d 627, 629, we adopted the substantial compliance doctrine stating, "actual notice coupled with substantial compliance is sufficient to satisfy personal service of process requirements[.]" We have defined substantial compliance as follows:

"Substantial compliance" with a statute means actual compliance in respect to the substance essential to every reasonable objective of the statute. It means that a court should determine whether the statute has been followed sufficiently so as to carry out the intent for which it was adopted. Substantial compliance with a statute is not shown unless it is made to appear that the purpose of the statute is shown to have been served. What constitutes substantial compliance with a statute is a matter depending on the facts of each particular case.
State v. Bunnell, 324 N.W.2d 418, 420 (S.D.1982) (internal citations and quotations omitted); see also Larson v. Hazeltine, 1996 SD 100, 552 N.W.2d 830, 835, Rans v. State, 390 N.W.2d 64 (S.D. 1986).

Id., 1998 SD 9 at ¶ 7, 574 N.W.2d at 629.

[¶ 7.] We have also stated that the purpose of service of process is to "`advise the defendant that an action or proceeding has...

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10 practice notes
  • Rodriguez v. Pataki, No. 02 CIV. 618(RMB).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • March 15, 2004
    ...Cohesion Cohesion Cohesion Voting Page100 2002 SD 34 VeleHa/Mahoney * Yes Yes Yes Yes 6 2002 SD 35 Spano/Ramos * Yes Yes Yes Yes 7 2000 SD 34 Velella/Koppel * Yes Yes Yes Yes 2000 SD 35 Spano/Abinati Yes Yes Yes Yes 14 1998 SD 34 Velella/Spallone * Yes Yes Yes Yes 22 1998 SD 35 Spano/Ploski......
  • Pennington v. STATE EX REL. JUD. SYSTEM, No. 21910.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 27, 2002
    ...580; State v. Phipps, 406 N.W.2d 146, 148 (S.D.1987). Questions of jurisdiction are reviewed de novo. White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 SD 34, ¶ 4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 928; Risse v. Meeks, 1998 SD 112, ¶ 10, 585 N.W.2d 875, 876; State v. Vandermay, 478 N.W.2d 289, 290 (S.D. 1991). ANALYS......
  • Upell v. Dewey Cnty. Comm'n, No. 27548.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • May 18, 2016
    ...(motion to dismiss and dismissal for expiration of the statute of limitations); White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 S.D. 34, ¶¶ 3–4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 927–28 (denial of motion to dismiss for improper service of process and expiration of the statute of limitations); Bison Twp. v. Perkins ......
  • Lekanidis v. Bendetti, No. 21246.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • July 5, 2000
    ...our review of a motion for summary judgment—is the pleader entitled to judgment as a matter of law?'" White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 SD 34, ¶ 4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 928 (quoting Risse v. Meeks, 1998 SD 112, ¶ 10, 585 N.W.2d 875, 876 (quotation omitted)). Further, because the issue of ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
10 cases
  • Rodriguez v. Pataki, No. 02 CIV. 618(RMB).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • March 15, 2004
    ...Cohesion Cohesion Cohesion Voting Page100 2002 SD 34 VeleHa/Mahoney * Yes Yes Yes Yes 6 2002 SD 35 Spano/Ramos * Yes Yes Yes Yes 7 2000 SD 34 Velella/Koppel * Yes Yes Yes Yes 2000 SD 35 Spano/Abinati Yes Yes Yes Yes 14 1998 SD 34 Velella/Spallone * Yes Yes Yes Yes 22 1998 SD 35 Spano/Ploski......
  • Pennington v. STATE EX REL. JUD. SYSTEM, No. 21910.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • February 27, 2002
    ...580; State v. Phipps, 406 N.W.2d 146, 148 (S.D.1987). Questions of jurisdiction are reviewed de novo. White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 SD 34, ¶ 4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 928; Risse v. Meeks, 1998 SD 112, ¶ 10, 585 N.W.2d 875, 876; State v. Vandermay, 478 N.W.2d 289, 290 (S.D. 1991). ANALYS......
  • Upell v. Dewey Cnty. Comm'n, No. 27548.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • May 18, 2016
    ...(motion to dismiss and dismissal for expiration of the statute of limitations); White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 S.D. 34, ¶¶ 3–4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 927–28 (denial of motion to dismiss for improper service of process and expiration of the statute of limitations); Bison Twp. v. Perkins ......
  • Lekanidis v. Bendetti, No. 21246.
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of South Dakota
    • July 5, 2000
    ...review of a motion for summary judgment—is the pleader entitled to judgment as a matter of law?'" White Eagle v. City of Fort Pierre, 2000 SD 34, ¶ 4, 606 N.W.2d 926, 928 (quoting Risse v. Meeks, 1998 SD 112, ¶ 10, 585 N.W.2d 875, 876 (quotation omitted)). Further, because the issue of......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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