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Nelson v. American Home Mortgage Servicing, Inc.

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 05-02-2012
Case #: A146919
Armstrong, P.J. for the Court; Haselton, P.J; and Duncan, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A146919.pdf

Civil Procedure: Under ORCP 71B, a court must have personal jurisdiction over a party in order to render a judgment.

Defendant appealed trial court’s denial of its ORCP 71B motion. The plaintiff attempted to serve the defendant by providing copies of the complaint and the accompanying exhibits, but did not include a summons within the documents. When the defendant failed to provide a response, the plaintiff moved for, and was granted a default judgment. Defendant filed a motion to set aside the verdict, arguing among other things, that the default judgment was void due to lack of personal jurisdiction because the defendant had never received a summons. The lower court denied the motion, despite the lack of any evidence showing that a summons was served. The Court of Appeals held that because there was no evidence of a summons having been served, the lower court did not have personal jurisdiction and therefore the judgment was void. Reversed and remanded.