MR. JUSTICE MARSHALL delivered the opinion of the Court.
The controversy in this case concerns the constitutionality of a Delaware statute that allows a court of that State to take jurisdiction of a lawsuit by sequestering any property of the defendant that happens to be located in Delaware. Appellants contend that the sequestration statute as applied in this case violates the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment both because it permits the state courts to exercise jurisdiction despite the absence of sufficient contacts among the defendants, the litigation, and the State of Delaware and because it authorizes the deprivation of defendants' property without providing adequate procedural safeguards. We find it necessary to consider only the first of these contentions.
Appellee Heitner, a nonresident of Delaware, is the owner of one share of stock in the Greyhound Corp., a business incorporated under the laws of Delaware with its principal place of business in Phoenix, Ariz. On May 22, 1974, he filed a shareholder's derivative suit in the Court of Chancery for New Castle County, Del., in which he named as defendants Greyhound, its wholly owned subsidiary Greyhound Lines, Inc.,
Simultaneously with his complaint, Heitner filed a motion for an order of sequestration of the Delaware property of the individual defendants pursuant to Del. Code Ann., Tit. 10, § 366 (1975).
The requested sequestration order was signed the day the motion was filed.
All 28 defendants were notified of the initiation of the suit by certified mail directed to their last known addresses and by publication in a New Castle County newspaper. The 21 defendants whose property was seized (hereafter referred to as appellants) responded by entering a special appearance for
The Court of Chancery rejected these arguments in a letter opinion which emphasized the purpose of the Delaware sequestration procedure:
This limitation on the purpose and length of time for which sequestered property is held, the court concluded, rendered inapplicable the due process requirements enunciated in Sniadach v. Family Finance Corp., 395 U.S. 337 (1969); Fuentes v. Shevin, 407 U.S. 67 (1972); and Mitchell v. W. T. Grant Co., 416 U.S. 600 (1974). App. 75-76, 80, 83-85. The court also found no state-law or federal constitutional barrier to the sequestrator's reliance on Del. Code Ann., Tit. 8, § 169
On appeal, the Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the Court of Chancery. Greyhound Corp. v. Heitner, 361 A.2d 225 (1976). Most of the Supreme Court's opinion was devoted to rejecting appellants' contention that the sequestration procedure is inconsistent with the due process analysis developed in the Sniadach line of cases. The court based its rejection of that argument in part on its agreement with the Court of Chancery that the purpose of the sequestration procedure is to compel the appearance of the defendant, a purpose not involved in the Sniadach cases. The court also relied on what it considered the ancient origins of the sequestration procedure and approval of that procedure in the opinions of this Court,
We noted probable jurisdiction. 429 U.S. 813.
The Delaware courts rejected appellants' jurisdictional challenge by noting that this suit was brought as a quasi in rem proceeding. Since quasi in rem jurisdiction is traditionally based on attachment or seizure of property present in the jurisdiction, not on contacts between the defendant and the State, the courts considered appellants' claimed lack of contacts with Delaware to be unimportant. This categorical analysis assumes the continued soundness of the conceptual structure founded on the century-old case of Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714 (1878).
Pennoyer was an ejectment action brought in federal court under the diversity jurisdiction. Pennoyer, the defendant in that action, held the land under a deed purchased in a sheriff's sale conducted to realize on a judgment for attorney's fees obtained against Neff in a previous action by one Mitchell. At the time of Mitchell's suit in an Oregon State court, Neff was a nonresident of Oregon. An Oregon statute allowed service by publication on nonresidents who had property in the State,
Mr. Justice Field's opinion for the Court focused on the territorial limits of the States' judicial powers. Although recognizing that the States are not truly independent sovereigns, Mr. Justice Field found that their jurisdiction was defined by the "principles of public law" that regulate the relationships among independent nations. The first of those principles was "that every State possesses exclusive jurisdiction and sovereignty over persons and property within its territory." The second was "that no State can exercise direct jurisdiction and authority over persons or property without its territory." Id., at 722. Thus, "in virtue of the State's jurisdiction over the property of the non-resident situated within its limits," the state courts "can inquire into that non-resident's obligations to its own citizens . . . to the extent necessary to control the disposition of the property." Id., at 723. The Court recognized that if the conclusions of that inquiry were adverse to the nonresident property owner, his interest in the property would be affected. Ibid. Similarly, if the defendant consented to the jurisdiction of the state courts or was personally served within the State, a judgment could affect his interest in property outside the State. But any attempt "directly" to assert extraterritorial jurisdiction over persons or property would offend sister States and exceed the inherent limits of the State's power. A judgment resulting from such an attempt, Mr. Justice Field concluded, was not only unenforceable
This analysis led to the conclusion that Mitchell's judgment against Neff could not be validly based on the State's power over persons within its borders, because Neff had not been personally served in Oregon, nor had he consensually appeared before the Oregon court. The Court reasoned that even if Neff had received personal notice of the action, service of process outside the State would have been ineffectual since the State's power was limited by its territorial boundaries. Moreover, the Court held, the action could not be sustained on the basis of the State's power over property within its borders because that property had not been brought before the court by attachment or any other procedure prior to judgment.
From our perspective, the importance of Pennoyer is not its result, but the fact that its principles and corollaries derived from them became the basic elements of the constitutional
By concluding that "[t]he authority of every tribunal is necessarily restricted by the territorial limits of the State in which it is established," 95 U. S., at 720, Pennoyer sharply limited the availability of in personam jurisdiction over defendants not resident in the forum State. If a nonresident defendant could not be found in a State, he could not be sued there. On the other hand, since the State in which property
The Pennoyer rules generally favored nonresident defendants by making them harder to sue. This advantage was reduced, however, by the ability of a resident plaintiff to satisfy a claim against a nonresident defendant by bringing into court any property of the defendant located in the plaintiff's State. See, e. g., Zammit, Quasi-In-Rem Jurisdiction: Outmoded and Unconstitutional?, 49 St. John's L. Rev. 668, 670 (1975). For example, in the well-known case of Harris v. Balk, 198 U.S. 215 (1905), Epstein, a resident of Maryland, had a claim against Balk, a resident of North Carolina. Harris, another North Carolina resident, owed money to Balk. When Harris happened to visit Maryland, Epstein garnished his debt to Balk. Harris did not contest the debt to Balk and paid it to Epstein's North Carolina attorney. When Balk later sued Harris in North Carolina, this Court held that the Full Faith and Credit Clause, U. S. Const., Art. IV, § 1, required that Harris' payment to Epstein be treated as a discharge of his debt to Balk. This Court reasoned that the debt Harris owed Balk was an intangible form of property belonging to Balk, and that the location of that property traveled with the debtor. By obtaining personal jurisdiction over Harris, Epstein had "arrested" his debt to Balk, 198 U. S., at 223, and brought it into the Maryland court. Under the structure established by Pennoyer, Epstein was then entitled to proceed against that debt to vindicate his claim against Balk, even though Balk himself was not subject to the jurisdiction
Pennoyer itself recognized that its rigid categories, even as blurred by the kind of action typified by Harris, could not accommodate some necessary litigation. Accordingly, Mr. Justice Field's opinion carefully noted that cases involving the personal status of the plaintiff, such as divorce actions, could be adjudicated in the plaintiff's home State even though the defendant could not be served within that State. 95 U. S., at 733-735. Similarly, the opinion approved the practice of considering a foreign corporation doing business in a State to have consented to being sued in that State. Id., at 735-736; see Lafayette Ins. Co. v. French, 18 How. 404 (1856). This
The advent of automobiles, with the concomitant increase in the incidence of individuals causing injury in States where they were not subject to in personam actions under Pennoyer, required further moderation of the territorial limits on jurisdictional power. This modification, like the accommodation to the realities of interstate corporate activities, was accomplished by use of a legal fiction that left the conceptual structure established in Pennoyer theoretically unaltered. Cf. Olberding v. Illinois Central R. Co., 346 U.S. 338, 340-341 (1953). The fiction used was that the out-of-state motorist, who it was assumed could be excluded altogether from the State's highways, had by using those highways appointed a designated state official as his agent to accept process. See Hess v. Pawloski, 274 U.S. 352 (1927). Since the motorist's "agent" could be personally served within the State, the state courts could obtain in personam jurisdiction over the nonresident driver.
The motorists' consent theory was easy to administer since it required only a finding that the out-of-state driver had used the State's roads. By contrast, both the fictions of implied consent to service on the part of a foreign corporation and of corporate presence required a finding that the corporation was "doing business" in the forum State. Defining the criteria for making that finding and deciding whether they were met absorbed much judicial energy. See, e. g., International Shoe
The question in International Shoe was whether the corporation was subject to the judicial and taxing jurisdiction of Washington. Mr. Chief Justice Stone's opinion for the Court began its analysis of that question by noting that the historical basis of in personam jurisdiction was a court's power over the defendant's person. That power, however, was no longer the central concern:
Thus, the inquiry into the State's jurisdiction over a foreign corporation appropriately focused not on whether the corporation was "present" but on whether there have been
Thus, the relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the litigation, rather than the mutually exclusive sovereignty of the States on which the rules of Pennoyer rest, became the central concern of the inquiry into personal jurisdiction.
No equally dramatic change has occurred in the law governing jurisdiction in rem. There have, however, been intimations that the collapse of the in personam wing of Pennoyer has not left that decision unweakened as a foundation for in rem jurisdiction. Well-reasoned lower court opinions have questioned the proposition that the presence of property in a State gives that State jurisdiction to adjudicate rights to the property regardless of the relationship of the underlying dispute and the property owner to the forum. See, e. g., U. S. Industries, Inc. v. Gregg, 540 F.2d 142 (CA3 1976), cert. pending, No. 76-359; Jonnet v. Dollar Savings Bank, 530 F.2d 1123, 1130-1143 (CA3 1976) (Gibbons, J., concurring); Camire v. Scieszka, 116 N.H. 281, 358 A.2d 397 (1976); Bekins v. Huish, 1 Ariz.App. 258, 401 P.2d 743 (1965); Atkinson v. Superior Court, 49 Cal.2d 338, 316 P.2d 960 (1957), appeal dismissed and cert. denied sub nom. Columbia Broadcasting System v. Atkinson, 357 U.S. 569 (1958). The overwhelming majority of commentators have also rejected Pennoyer's premise that a proceeding "against" property is not a proceeding against the owners of that property. Accordingly, they urge that the "traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice" that govern a State's power to adjudicate in personam should also govern its power to adjudicate personal rights to property located in the State. See, e. g., Von Mehren & Trautman, Jurisdiction to Adjudicate: A Suggested Analysis, 79 Harv. L. Rev. 1121 (1966) (hereafter Von Mehren & Trautman); Traynor, Is This Conflict Really Necessary?, 37 Texas L. Rev. 657 (1959) (hereafter Traynor); Ehrenzweig, The Transient Rule of Personal Jurisdiction: The "Power" Myth and Forum Conveniens, 65 Yale L. J. 289 (1956); Developments; Hazard.
It is clear, therefore, that the law of state-court jurisdiction no longer stands securely on the foundation established in Pennoyer.
The case for applying to jurisdiction in rem the same test of "fair play and substantial justice" as governs assertions of jurisdiction in personam is simple and straightforward. It is premised on recognition that "[t]he phrase, `judicial jurisdiction over a thing,' is a customary elliptical way of referring to jurisdiction over the interests of persons in a thing." Restatement (Second) of Conflict of Laws § 56, Introductory Note (1971) (hereafter Restatement).
This argument, of course, does not ignore the fact that the presence of property in a State may bear on the existence of jurisdiction by providing contacts among the forum State, the defendant, and the litigation. For example, when claims to the property itself are the source of the underlying controversy between the plaintiff and the defendant,
It appears, therefore, that jurisdiction over many types of actions which now are or might be brought in rem would not be affected by a holding that any assertion of state-court jurisdiction must satisfy the International Shoe standard.
Since acceptance of the International Shoe test would most affect this class of cases, we examine the arguments against adopting that standard as they relate to this category of litigation.
Accord, Developments 955. This justification, however, does not explain why jurisdiction should be recognized without regard to whether the property is present in the State because of an effort to avoid the owner's obligations. Nor does it support jurisdiction to adjudicate the underlying claim. At most, it suggests that a State in which property is located should have jurisdiction to attach that property, by use of proper procedures,
We are left, then, to consider the significance of the long history of jurisdiction based solely on the presence of property in a State. Although the theory that territorial power is both essential to and sufficient for jurisdiction has been undermined, we have never held that the presence of property in a State does not automatically confer jurisdiction over the owner's interest in that property.
We therefore conclude that all assertions of state-court jurisdiction must be evaluated according to the standards set forth in International Shoe and its progeny.
The Delaware courts based their assertion of jurisdiction in this case solely on the statutory presence of appellants' property in Delaware. Yet that property is not the subject matter of this litigation, nor is the underlying cause of action related to the property. Appellants' holdings in Greyhound do not, therefore, provide contacts with Delaware sufficient to support the jurisdiction of that State's courts over appellants. If it exists, that jurisdiction must have some other foundation.
Appellee Heitner did not allege and does not now claim that appellants have ever set foot in Delaware. Nor does he identify any act related to his cause of action as having taken place in Delaware. Nevertheless, he contends that appellants' positions as directors and officers of a corporation chartered in Delaware
This argument is undercut by the failure of the Delaware Legislature to assert the state interest appellee finds so compelling. Delaware law bases jurisdiction, not on appellants' status as corporate fiduciaries, but rather on the presence of their property in the State. Although the sequestration procedure used here may be most frequently used in derivative suits against officers and directors, Hughes Tool Co. v. Fawcett Publications, Inc., 290 A.2d 693, 695 (Del. Ch. 1972), the authorizing statute evinces no specific concern with such actions. Sequestration can be used in any suit against a nonresident,
Moreover, even if Heitner's assessment of the importance of Delaware's interest is accepted, his argument fails to demonstrate that Delaware is a fair forum for this litigation. The interest appellee has identified may support the application of Delaware law to resolve any controversy over appellants' actions in their capacities as officers and directors.
Appellee suggests that by accepting positions as officers or directors of a Delaware corporation, appellants performed the acts required by Hanson v. Denckla. He notes that Delaware law provides substantial benefits to corporate officers and directors,
But like Heitner's first argument, this line of reasoning establishes only that it is appropriate for Delaware law to govern the obligations of appellants to Greyhound and its stockholders. It does not demonstrate that appellants have "purposefully avail[ed themselves] of the privilege of conducting activities within the forum State," Hanson v. Denckla, supra, at 253, in a way that would justify bringing them before a Delaware tribunal. Appellants have simply had nothing to do with the State of Delaware. Moreover, appellants had no reason to expect to be haled before a Delaware court. Delaware, unlike some States,
The Due Process Clause
Delaware's assertion of jurisdiction over appellants in this case is inconsistent with that constitutional limitation on
It is so ordered.
MR. JUSTICE REHNQUIST took no part in the consideration or decision of this case.
MR. JUSTICE POWELL, concurring.
I agree that the principles of International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310 (1945), should be extended to govern assertions of in rem as well as in personam jurisdiction in a state court. I also agree that neither the statutory presence of appellants' stock in Delaware nor their positions as directors and officers of a Delaware corporation can provide sufficient contacts to support the Delaware courts' assertion of jurisdiction in this case.
I would explicitly reserve judgment, however, on whether the ownership of some forms of property whose situs is indisputably and permanently located within a State may, without more, provide the contacts necessary to subject a defendant to jurisdiction within the State to the extent of the value of the property. In the case of real property, in particular, preservation of the common-law concept of quasi in rem jurisdiction arguably would avoid the uncertainty of the general International Shoe standard without significant cost to "`traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.'" Id., at 316, quoting Milliken v. Meyer, 311 U.S. 457, 463 (1940).
Subject to the foregoing reservation, I join the opinion of the Court.
MR. JUSTICE STEVENS, concurring in the judgment.
The Due Process Clause affords protection against "judgments without notice." International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 324 (opinion of Black, J.). Throughout our history the acceptable exercise of in rem and quasi in rem
The requirement of fair notice also, I believe, includes fair warning that a particular activity may subject a person to the jurisdiction of a foreign sovereign. If I visit another State, or acquire real estate or open a bank account in it, I knowingly assume some risk that the State will exercise its power over my property or my person while there. My contact with the State, though minimal, gives rise to predictable risks.
Perhaps the same consequences should flow from the purchase of stock of a corporation organized under the laws of a foreign nation, because to some limited extent one's property and affairs then become subject to the laws of the nation of domicile of the corporation. As a matter of international law, that suggestion might be acceptable because a foreign investment is sufficiently unusual to make it appropriate to require the investor to study the ramifications of his decision. But a purchase of securities in the domestic market is an entirely different matter.
One who purchases shares of stock on the open market can hardly be expected to know that he has thereby become subject to suit in a forum remote from his residence and unrelated to the transaction. As a practical matter, the Delaware sequestration statute creates an unacceptable risk of judgment without notice. Unlike the 49 other States, Delaware treats the place of incorporation as the situs of the stock, even though both the owner and the custodian of the shares are elsewhere. Moreover, Delaware denies the defendant
How the Court's opinion may be applied in other contexts is not entirely clear to me. I agree with MR. JUSTICE POWELL that it should not be read to invalidate quasi in rem jurisdiction where real estate is involved. I would also not read it as invalidating other long-accepted methods of acquiring jurisdiction over persons with adequate notice of both the particular controversy and the fact that their local activities might subject them to suit. My uncertainty as to the reach of the opinion, and my fear that it purports to decide a great deal more than is necessary to dispose of this case, persuade me merely to concur in the judgment.
MR. JUSTICE BRENNAN, concurring in part and dissenting in part.
I join Parts I-III of the Court's opinion. I fully agree that the minimum-contacts analysis developed in International Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310 (1945), represents a far more sensible construct for the exercise of state-court jurisdiction than the patchwork of legal and factual fictions that has been generated from the decision in Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714 (1878). It is precisely because
The primary teaching of Parts I-III of today's decision is that a State, in seeking to assert jurisdiction over a person located outside its borders, may only do so on the basis of minimum contacts among the parties, the contested transaction, and the forum State. The Delaware Supreme Court could not have made plainer, however, that its sequestration statute, Del. Code Ann., Tit. 10, § 366 (1975), does not operate on this basis, but instead is strictly an embodiment of quasi in rem jurisdiction, a jurisdictional predicate no longer constitutionally viable:
This state-court ruling obviously comports with the understanding of the parties, for the issue of the existence of minimum contacts was never pleaded by appellee, made the subject of discovery, or ruled upon by the Delaware courts. These facts notwithstanding, the Court in Part IV reaches the minimum-contacts question and finds such contacts lacking as applied to appellants. Succinctly stated, once having properly and persuasively decided that the quasi in rem statute that Delaware admits to having enacted is invalid, the Court then proceeds to find that a minimum-contacts law that Delaware expressly denies having enacted also could not be constitutionally applied in this case.
In my view, a purer example of an advisory opinion is not to be found. True, appellants do not deny having received actual notice of the action in question. Ante, at 213 n. 40.
My concern with the inappropriateness of the Court's action is highlighted by two other considerations. First, an inquiry into minimum contacts inevitably is highly dependent on creating a proper factual foundation detailing the contacts between the forum State and the controversy in question. Because neither the plaintiff-appellee nor the state courts viewed such an inquiry as germane in this instance, the Court today is unable to draw upon a proper factual record in reaching its conclusion; moreover, its disposition denies appellee the normal opportunity to seek discovery on the contacts issue. Second, it must be remembered that the Court's ruling is a constitutional one and necessarily
Nonetheless, because the Court rules on the minimum-contacts question, I feel impelled to express my view. While evidence derived through discovery might satisfy me that minimum contacts are lacking in a given case, I am convinced that as a general rule a state forum has jurisdiction to adjudicate a shareholder derivative action centering on the conduct and policies of the directors and officers of a corporation chartered by that State. Unlike the Court, I therefore would not foreclose Delaware from asserting jurisdiction over appellants were it persuaded to do so on the basis of minimum contacts.
It is well settled that a derivative lawsuit as presented here does not inure primarily to the benefit of the named plaintiff. Rather, the primary beneficiaries are the corporation and its owners, the shareholders. "The cause of action which such a plaintiff brings before the court is not his own but the corporation's. . . . Such a plaintiff often may represent an important public and stockholder interest in bringing faithless managers to book." Koster v. Lumbermens Mutual Casualty Co., 330 U.S. 518, 522, 524 (1947).
Viewed in this light, the chartering State has an unusually powerful interest in insuring the availability of a convenient forum for litigating claims involving a possible multiplicity of defendant fiduciaries and for vindicating the State's substantive policies regarding the management of its domestic corporations. I believe that our cases fairly establish that
In this instance, Delaware can point to at least three interrelated public policies that are furthered by its assertion of jurisdiction. First, the State has a substantial interest in providing restitution for its local corporations that allegedly have been victimized by fiduciary misconduct, even if the managerial decisions occurred outside the State. The importance of this general state interest in assuring restitution for its own residents previously found expression in cases that went outside the then-prevailing due process framework to authorize state-court jurisdiction over nonresident motorists who injure others within the State. Hess v. Pawloski, 274 U.S. 352 (1927); see Olberding v. Illinois Central R. Co., 346 U.S. 338, 341 (1953). More recently, it has led States to seek and to acquire jurisdiction over nonresident tortfeasors whose purely out-of-state activities produce domestic consequences. E. g., Gray v. American Radiator & Standard Sanitary Corp., 22 Ill.2d 432, 176 N.E.2d 761 (1961). Second, state courts have legitimately read their jurisdiction expansively when a cause of action centers in an area in which the forum State possesses a manifest regulatory interest. E. g., McGee v. International Life Ins. Co., 355 U.S. 220 (1957) (insurance regulation); Travelers Health Assn. v. Virginia, 339 U.S. 643 (1950) (blue sky laws). Only this Term we reiterated that the conduct of corporate fiduciaries is just such a matter in which the policies and interests of the domestic forum are ordinarily presumed to be paramount. Santa Fe Industries, Inc. v. Green, 430 U.S. 462, 478-480 (1977); see Cort v. Ash, 422 U.S. 66, 84-85 (1975). Finally, a State like Delaware has a recognized interest in affording a convenient forum for supervising and overseeing the affairs of an entity that is purely the creation of that State's law. For example, even following our decision in
To be sure, the Court is not blind to these considerations. It notes that the State's interests "may support the application of Delaware law to resolve any controversy over appellants' actions in their capacities as officers and directors." Ante, at 215. But this, the Court argues, pertains to choice of law, not jurisdiction. I recognize that the jurisdictional and choice-of-law inquiries are not identical. Hanson v. Denckla, 357 U.S. 235, 254 (1958). But I would not compartmentalize thinking in this area quite so rigidly as it seems to me the Court does today, for both inquiries "are
Furthermore, I believe that practical considerations argue in favor of seeking to bridge the distance between the choice-of-law and jurisdictional inquiries. Even when a court would apply the law of a different forum,
This case is not one where, in my judgment, this preference for jurisdiction is adequately answered. Certainly nothing said by the Court persuades me that it would be unfair to subject appellants to suit in Delaware. The fact that the record does not reveal whether they "set foot" or committed "act[s] related to [the] cause of action" in Delaware, ante, at 213, is not decisive, for jurisdiction can be based strictly on out-of-state acts having foreseeable effects in the forum State. E. g., McGee v. International Life Ins. Co., supra; Gray v. American Radiator & Standard Sanitary Corp., supra; Restatement § 37. I have little difficulty in applying this principle to nonresident fiduciaries whose alleged breaches of trust are said to have substantial damaging effect on the financial posture of a resident corporation.
I, therefore, would approach the minimum-contacts analysis differently than does the Court. Crucial to me is the fact that appellants
"(a) If it appears in any complaint filed in the Court of Chancery that the defendant or any one or more of the defendants is a nonresident of the State, the Court may make an order directing such nonresident defendant or defendants to appear by a day certain to be designated. Such order shall be served on such nonresident defendant or defendants by mail or otherwise, if practicable, and shall be published in such manner as the Court directs, not less than once a week for 3 consecutive weeks. The Court may compel the appearance of the defendant by the seizure of all or any part of his property, which property may be sold under the order of the Court to pay the demand of the plaintiff, if the defendant does not appear, or otherwise defaults. Any defendant whose property shall have been so seized and who shall have entered a general appearance in the cause may, upon notice to the plaintiff, petition the Court for an order releasing such property or any part thereof from the seizure. The Court shall release such property unless the plaintiff shall satisfy the Court that because of other circumstances there is a reasonable possibility that such release may render it substantially less likely that plaintiff will obtain satisfaction of any judgment secured. If such petition shall not be granted, or if no such petition shall be filed, such property shall remain subject to seizure and may be sold to satisfy any judgment entered in the cause. The Court may at any time release such property or any part thereof upon the giving of sufficient security.
"(b) The Court may make all necessary rules respecting the form of process, the manner of issuance and return thereof, the release of such property from seizure and for the sale of the property so seized, and may require the plaintiff to give approved security to abide any order of the Court respecting the property.
"(c) Any transfer or assignment of the property so seized after the seizure thereof shall be void and after the sale of the property is made and confirmed, the purchaser shall be entitled to and have all the right, title and interest of the defendant in and to the property so seized and sold and such sale and confirmation shall transfer to the purchaser all the right, title and interest of the defendant in and to the property as fully as if the defendant had transferred the same to the purchaser in accordance with law."
Following a technical amendment of the complaint, the original sequestration order was vacated and replaced by an alias sequestration order identical in its terms to the original.
The remaining defendants apparently owned no property subject to the sequestration order.
"For all purposes of title, action, attachment, garnishment and jurisdiction of all courts held in this State, but not for the purpose of taxation, the situs of the ownership of the capital stock of all corporations existing under the laws of this State, whether organized under this chapter or otherwise, shall be regarded as in this State."
Sequestration is the equity counterpart of the process of foreign attachment in suits at law considered in Ownbey. Delaware's sequestration statute was modeled after its attachment statute. See Sands v. Lefcourt Realty Corp., 35 Del. Ch. 340, 344-345, 117 A.2d 365, 367 (Sup. Ct. 1955); Folk & Moyer, Sequestration in Delaware: A Constitutional Analysis, 73 Colum. L. Rev. 749, 751-754 (1973).
Accordingly, "consistent with the pragmatic approach that we have followed in the past in determining finality," id., at 486, we conclude that the judgment below is final within the meaning of § 1257.
As did the Court in Hanson, we will for convenience generally use the term "in rem" in place of "in rem and quasi in rem."
"The importance of the fact of the right of the original creditor to sue his debtor in the foreign State, as affecting the right of the creditor of that creditor to sue the debtor or garnishee, lies in the nature of the attachment proceeding. The plaintiff, in such proceeding in the foreign State is able to sue out the attachment and attach the debt due from the garnishee to his (the garnishee's) creditor, because of the fact that the plaintiff is really in such proceeding a representative of the creditor of the garnishee, and therefore if such creditor himself had the right to commence suit to recover the debt in the foreign State his representative has the same right, as representing him, and may garnish or attach the debt, provided the municipal law of the State where the attachment was sued out permits it." Id., at 226.
The problem with this reasoning is that unless the plaintiff has obtained a judgment establishing his claim against the principal defendant, see, e. g., Baltimore & O. R. Co. v. Hostetter, 240 U.S. 620 (1916), his right to "represent" the principal defendant in an action against the garnishee is at issue. See Beale, The Exercise of Jurisdiction in Rem to Compel Payment of a Debt, 27 Harv. L. Rev. 107, 118-120 (1913).
"The Fourteenth Amendment did not, in guaranteeing due process of law, abridge the jurisdiction which a State possessed over property within its borders, regardless of the residence or presence of the owner. That jurisdiction extends alike to tangible and to intangible property. Indebtedness due from a resident to a non-resident—of which bank deposits are an example—is property within the State. Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Ry. Co. v. Sturm, 174 U.S. 710. It is, indeed, the species of property which courts of the several States have most frequently applied in satisfaction of the obligations of absent debtors. Harris v. Balk, 198 U.S. 215. Substituted service on a non-resident by publication furnishes no legal basis for a judgment in personam. Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U.S. 714. But garnishment or foreign attachment is a proceeding quasi in rem. Freeman v. Alderson, 119 U.S. 185, 187. The thing belonging to the absent defendant is seized and applied to the satisfaction of his obligation. The Federal Constitution presents no obstacle to the full exercise of this power."
See also Huron Holding Corp. v. Lincoln Mine Operating Co., 312 U.S. 183, 193 (1941).
More recent decisions, however, contain no similar sweeping endorsements of jurisdiction based on property. In Hanson v. Denckla, 357 U. S., at 246, we noted that a state court's in rem jurisdiction is "[f]ounded on physical power" and that "[t]he basis of the jurisdiction is the presence of the subject property within the territorial jurisdiction of the forum State." We found in that case, however, that the property which was the basis for the assertion of in rem jurisdiction was not present in the State. We therefore did not have to consider whether the presence of property in the State was sufficient to justify jurisdiction. We also held that the defendant did not have sufficient contact with the State to justify in personam jurisdiction.