California Court of Appeal

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Greenwell v. Auto-Owners Insurance Company, C074546

This breach of contract suit arose out of two fires that damaged plaintiff building owner's building in Arkanas. Plaintiff is a California resident and operated his property ownership business from California. Plaintiff obtained his insurance policy through an insurance agent in Arkanas. Defendant insurer was based in Michigan and did not business in California aside from writing this policy. The trial court’s order granting defendant's motion to quash the service of summons is affirmed, where: 1) under the federal constitutional test for specific jurisdiction, defendant purposefully availed itself of the privilege of conducting activities in California by writing a policy that covered various risks, losses, and damages that could have arisen in California, but there was no substantial nexus between defendant's activities in California and the present action; and 2) in the absence of a substantial nexus between defendant's California activities and this suit, the exercise of personal jurisdiction over the defendant in this case does not comport with due process.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 01/27/2015
  • Published 01/27/2015


  • Robie


  • California Court of Appeal