HANSON V. DENCKLA by JohnMValentine


									CIV PRO
HANSON V. DENCKLA, 357 US 235, 78 S.Ct. 1228, 2 L.Ed.2d 1283 (1958) History: Two daughters in will brought action in FL claiming the appt of 3rd sister’s kids as beneficiaries of the trust was ineffective (meaning they would get the assets of the trust); defendants argued the suit couldn’t go forward b/c the FL court couldn’t assert jurisdiction over the DE trustee; FL court found it had jurisdiction over the trustee for the purpose of the action—said trust was invalid and how Donner’s exercise of power of appt was ineffective to pass title, so the will was how the title should’ve been passed; DE action began, before judgment was rendered in FL, to determine who was entitled to share the trust assets situated in DE; parties were almost exactly the same as in FL; when FL judgment was rendered, legatees under the will argued it res judicata in DE action; DE court found trust and Donner’s exercise of power of appt valid in DE Facts: Dora Donner (PA) established a trust in DE, naming a DE bank as trustee; Donner would receive the income of the trust during her lifetime and when she died, it was to go to whoever she named beneficiary; Donner retained the power to change beneficiaries at any time; Donner moved to FL; she left most of her estate to her two daughters and designated two of her grandkids (kids of 3rd daughter) as beneficiaries of a significant portion of the trust’s assets; remainder went to estate Issue(s): Did FL have jurisdiction? Was DE justified in refusing full faith and credit to FL decree? Holding: FL contacts less than minimal; DE justified in refusing full faith and credit to FL decree Analysis: Supreme Court found trustee’s contacts w/FL had been less than minimal and that state couldn’t assert jurisdiction; since FL didn’t have personal jurisdiction over an indispensable party, DE was justified in refusing full faith and credit to FL decree; Court said requirements for jurisdiction have evolved from the rigid rule of Pennoyer v. Neff to the flexible Int’l Shoe v. WA From FL, Donner carried on little things like mailing of premiums, like McGee, but Donner did not do anything in FL that bears the same relationship to the agreement as the solicitation in McGee Court says it understands in FL that the trustee is an indispensable party who the court must have jurisdiction over before it enters judgment in a proceeding

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