Case: Burnham v.

Superior Court Parties: Petitioner - Burnham Respondent - Superior Court of California Procedural History: Superior court of California held judgment over petitioner in a divorce action. Petitioner requests certiorari to U.S. Supreme court over right of jurisdiction for California superior court. Facts: Petitioner separated from his wife. Petitioner lived in NJ, his wife was living in CA. Petitioner visited CA, and was served with a CA court summons. Petitioner made a special appearance in CA superior court and moved against being held under the court's judgment for lack of jurisdiction. His only contacts with CA were a few short visits, for business and for visiting his children. CA superior court denied the motion, and court of appeals also rejected petitioner's contention that the due process clause of the 14th amendment was being violated. Petitioner was granted certiorari, and is now before the U.S. Supreme Court. Issue: Was the due process clause of the 14 amendment being violated when a state asserts jurisdiction over a non-resident, who was personally served while present in the state for activities not related to the suit? Holding/Judgment: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the appeals court and held that the forum state had personal jurisdiction over petitioner nonresident in the pending divorce action in the forum because the requisite minimum contacts were satisfied by petitioner's physical presence in the forum, even if on unrelated matters. Due process was satisfied because service of process occurred while petitioner was in the forum. Notes: All rules of jurisdiction must satisfy right of due process. If defendant is voluntarily in a state, and is personally served in that state, then the state has jurisdiction. You can't claim that you are unfairly dragged to the state. You should know that by going to the state, you are putting yourself at risk of being under the state's jurisdiction if served. You are under protection of state laws while there. Easier and fairer, due to advanced technology in travel. Also, evidenced that it would not be burdensome for defendant to travel to forum state, since he had done it once before. No unfairness because he is already in the state. Pg 122 … "for these reasons, as a rule…" Hypo: If children were with father in NJ, and he sent them to CA to visit their mother, he should not be able to be sued in CA. He was doing a good thing, and by doing so, was served in CA, it is not just and fair, and it would make him not do a good thing by sending them. So sending the children, being a contact in order to serve him, would not be a benefit for society in general. It would be a bad rule. Suit related to his actions. He was served divorce papers, while visiting his children. The more he stresses the children as his reason for traveling, the stronger a connection between his actions and the suit.