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Tommills Brokerage Co. v. Loeb

May 22, 1969

TOMMILLS BROKERAGE COMPANY, INC., AN ILLINOIS CORPORATION, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
LOEB, RHOADES & COMPANY, A PARTNERSHIP, ROBERT MCDONALD AND MEDICAL FACILITIES CORPORATION, A NEVADA CORPORATION, DEFENDANTS-APPELLEES



Hastings, Senior Circuit Judge, Swygert and Fairchild, Circuit Judges.

Author: Hastings

HASTINGS, Senior Circuit Judge.

The sole issue presented on this appeal is whether the federal district court erred in dismissing plaintiff's complaint for want of personal jurisdiction over the person of each defendant.

This diversity action was brought by Tommills Brokerage Company, Inc. (plaintiff), an Illinois corporation based in Chicago, Illinois, by filing a four-count complaint in the Northern District of Illinois. Named as defendants were three non-residents of Illinois, viz.: Loeb, Rhoades & Company (Loeb, Rhoades), a partnership and citizen of New York; Robert McDonald (McDonald), a citizen of Utah; and Medical Facilities Corporation (MFC), a Nevada corporation based in Las Vegas, Nevada.

None of the defendants submitted to personal jurisdiction in this forum. Extraterritorial service of process on such defendants was sought pursuant to the "long-arm" statute of Illinois, §§ 16-17, Illinois Civil Practice Act, Ill.Rev.Stat. ch. 110 (1955). The relevant part of this statute provides:

"§ 16. Personal service outside State

(1) Personal service of summons may be made upon any party outside the State. If upon a citizen or resident of this State or upon a person who has submitted to the jurisdiction of the courts of this State, it shall have the force and effect of personal service of summons within this State; otherwise it shall have the force and effect of service by publication.

"§ 17. Act submitting to jurisdiction -- Process

(1) Any person, whether or not a citizen or resident of this State, who in person or through an agent does any of the acts hereinafter enumerated, thereby submits such person * * * to the jurisdiction of the courts of this State as to any cause of action arising from the doing of any such acts :

(a) The transaction of any business within this State;

(b) The commission of a tortious act within this State,

(3) Only causes of action arising from acts enumerated herein may be asserted against a defendant in an action in which jurisdiction over him is based upon this Section. * * *" (Emphasis supplied.)*fn1

Plaintiff corporation was a loan broker and financial consultant. Defendant partnership Loeb, Rhoades was a securities dealer, underwriter, financial consultant and investment adviser and was otherwise active in the financial field. Defendant corporation MFC was planning the construction of a large nursing home in Nevada and was desirous of obtaining a construction loan in the minimum amount of $1,500,000. Defendant McDonald was acting as president of MFC.

The district court sustained motions by all defendants to dismiss the complaint for want of jurisdiction on the grounds that none of defendants transacted any business or committed tortious acts in Illinois so as to subject ...


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