Name of Assigned Judge Sitting Judge if Other or Magistrate Judge Frederick J. Kapala than Assigned Judge
Plaintiffs' motion for a default judgment  as to defendants Austway and Sandgren is granted. Plaintiffs have established that this court has personal jurisdiction over defendant Phillips, and therefore he is not dismissed from this case. Plaintiffs shall notice this before the Magistrate Judge to prove the amount of damages.
O[ For further details see text below.] Docketing to mail notices.
Plaintiffs, Seaga International, Ltd. ("International") and Seaga Manufacturing, Inc. ("Manufacturing"), filed a complaint against defendants, Austway Vending Investments PTY Ltd. ("Austway"), Mark Sandgren, and Andrew Phillips, alleging that defendants owe them damages under a contract for the sale of vending machines and parts. Now before the court is plaintiffs' motion for default judgment as to defendants Austway and Sandgren. Also before the court are the parties' supplemental briefs on whether this court has personal jurisdiction over Phillips. For the following reasons, the court grants plaintiffs' motion for default judgment and finds that it has personal jurisdiction over Phillips.
Plaintiffs filed their complaint in the Circuit Court for the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit, Stephenson County, Illinois. According to the complaint, since on or after December 31, 2004, Austway ordered vending machines and parts from plaintiffs on several occasions pursuant to a Distributor Agreement. Plaintiffs delivered the merchandise, and now assert that there is a balance due of $379,616.28 for purchases, in addition to interest and fees of $445,406.14, pursuant to an agreement between the parties, for a total of $825,022.14. Plaintiffs further assert that on or about July 8, 2004, Sandgren and Phillips unconditionally guaranteed the obligations of Austway in order to induce plaintiffs to extend credit to Austway. Plaintiffs have requested payment from Sandgren and Phillips under the guarantee, which they have refused to provide.
The case was removed to this court based on diversity of citizenship pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(2). International is a Caymen Islands corporation with an office in Freeport, Illinois. Manufacturing is an Illinois corporation with a principal place of business in Freeport, Illinois. Austway is an Australian corporation with a principal place of business in Australia. Sandgren and Phillips are individual citizens of the Commonwealth of Australia who reside in Australia.
Phillips filed an initial motion to quash service pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 12(b)(2), (3), (4), and (5), arguing that he was served through "informal means" and that plaintiffs failed to provide evidence of proper service. The court denied Phillips' initial motion to quash based on improper venue because it contained insufficient argument and citation to pertinent authority to adequately raise the issue. Phillips filed a renewed motion to quash. The court granted Phillips' renewed motion in part and denied it in part, granting plaintiffs an opportunity to submit a brief and further evidence of Phillips' contacts with Illinois and ordering that if plaintiffs failed to do so, their claims against Phillips would be dismissed for lack of personal jurisdiction. Plaintiffs filed a supplemental brief, and Phillips filed a reply.
Plaintiffs also filed a motion for default judgment as to Austway and Sandgren, arguing that they were duly served with a copy of the verified complaint and summons on March, 31, 2010 and May 25, 2010, respectively, and failed to answer, plead, or otherwise defend the allegations of the complaint.
A. Plaintiffs' Motion for Default Judgment
Plaintiffs ask the court to enter a default judgment against Sandgren and Austway, claiming that both were duly served with a copy of the verified complaint and summons, and failed to answer, plead, or otherwise defend the allegations of the complaint. A district court possesses broad discretion under Rule 55(b)(2) to enter a default judgment. Fed. R. Civ. P. 55(b)(2); ...