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Central Clearing, Inc. v. Omega Industries

OPINION FILED OCTOBER 8, 1976.

CENTRAL CLEARING, INC., PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

OMEGA INDUSTRIES, INC., DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Cook County; the Hon. WILLIAM PATTERSON, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE BARRETT DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Plaintiff, Central Clearing, Inc., an Illinois employment agency, filed a complaint in the circuit court against defendant, Omega Industries, Inc., a Texas corporation, for breach of contract for failure to pay an employment agency fee and for fraudulently inducing plaintiff to perform services for defendant.

The total complaint alleged as follows:

"COUNT I

1. On or about April or May, 1974, pursuant to an agreement by and between the parties hereto, wherein the Plaintiff was to furnish the Defendant certain parties for employment by the Defendant, the Defendant did, in fact, hire one, Mr. De Witt Honeycutt, who was furnished to the Defendant by the Plaintiff, Central Clearing, Inc.

2. That by virtue of the acceptance and hiring by the Defendant, Omega Industries, of said person, as employee, the Plaintiff was entitled to the sum of $3,200, which sum the Plaintiff is entitled to by virtue of the agreement between the parties, and in accordance with the fee schedule filed and approved by the Department of Labor, State of Illinois, Revised Statutes, Chapter 48, Section 197a-197o.

3. Though often requested by the Plaintiff, the Defendant refuses and continues to refuse to make payment, on the above.

COUNT II

1-3. The Plaintiff realleges Paragraphs 1 through 3 as Paragraphs 1 through 3 of Count II.

4. That at the time of entering into the agreement with the Plaintiff, the Defendant had no intention of abiding by or conforming to the agreements made and entered into and that by the exercise of fraud and deceit willfully induced the Plaintiff to perform services for and on behalf of the Defendant, when the Defendant knowingly and willfully had no intention of making payment pursuant to that contract.

Wherefore, the Plaintiff prays that judgment be entered against the Defendant, in the sum of $5,000.00, as and for punitive damages and for its costs of suit."

Summons was served upon the vice-president of defendant Omega Industries, Inc., at his office in Tarrant County, Texas. Defendant filed a special and limited appearance and a motion to quash service of summons and to dismiss based on lack of jurisdiction. Plaintiff responded by filing a motion to strike the special appearance.

Two affidavits were submitted with a brief in support of defendant's motions to quash service of summons and to dismiss. John W. Kennerly, executive vice-president of Omega Industries, filed his affidavit which stated that Omega was incorporated in Texas and had its principal place of business in Grapevine, Texas; that Omega was not registered with the Secretary of State as a foreign corporation doing business in Illinois; that Omega was not qualified to do business in Illinois and did not have an office or place of business in Illinois; that Omega was not listed in any Illinois telephone directory, had no registered agent to accept service in Illinois, maintained no bank accounts and owned no real estate in Illinois; that Omega never contracted for the services of an employment agency during 1973 nor authorized Mr. U.M. Robinson to contract on its behalf for employment of new personnel; and that the only contacts Omega had with Central Clearing, Inc., prior to April 14, 1973, were three unsolicited telephone calls received in Grapevine, Texas, initiated and placed by employees of Central Clearing, Inc.

U.M. Robinson, technical director of marketing of Omega Industries, filed his affidavit which stated that he first received an unsolicited phone call from Central Clearing, Inc., personnel on April 4, 1973; that between April 4, 1973, and April 14, 1973, all contacts with Central Clearing, Inc., personnel were through unsolicited phone calls received in Grapevine, Texas; that he never agreed to use Central Clearing, Inc., as an employment agency; he never placed a job order with Central ...


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