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Opinion of the Court.
were the owners of an undivided four-fifths interest, and that the present plaintiff in error was the owner of the undivided fifth interest which had been the property of McKinley. Upon appeal, the Supreme Court reversed the judgment so far as it adjudged plaintiff in error to be the owner of McKinley's interest. 118 Minnesota, 117. By the present writ of error we are called upon to determine whether the Supreme Court of Minnesota, by its judgment giving effect to the decree in the partition suit notwithstanding the misnomer of Albert B. Geilfuss, Assignee, in the proceedings and summons, has deprived plaintiff in error of his property without due process of law, contrary to the Fourteenth Amendment.
The trial court held that no jurisdiction was acquired in the partition suit over the judgment lien of Albert B. Geilfuss, Assignee, and the Supreme Court declared that if this were correct the lien of his judgment upon the McKinley interest was not affected by the decree in that action, and that the subsequent sale of that interest under execution on the judgment gave a good title to the purchaser, under whom defendant (now plaintiff in error) claims; while on the other hand, if the court acquired jurisdiction over that judgment lien, the McKinley interest in the lands passed to the purchaser at the partition sale, and afterwards became the property of plaintiffs (now defendants in error). This was upon the assumption that the court had jurisdiction to decree a sale in the partition action, a question of state law arising out of facts not here pertinent, and to which an affirmative answer was given in the same opinion.
234 U. S.
The precise question now presented, therefore, is whether, under the circumstances, a service by the publication and mailing of a summons in the partition suit, naming as party and addressee "Albert Guilfuss, Assignee," and "Albert B. Guilfuss," constituted due process of law conferring jurisdiction to render a judgment binding
Opinion of the Court.
upon Albert B. Geilfuss, Assignee, with respect to his lien upon or interest in the land, he not having appeared.
There is a motion to dismiss, upon the ground that the Federal question was not properly raised in the state court. This motion must be denied. It is true that until the decision of the Supreme Court of the State, the Federal right was not clearly asserted. But it was not infringed in the trial court, which held in favor of the contention of defendant (now plaintiff in error) that the decree in the partition suit was not valid because of the insufficiency of the notice to Geilfuss. It was the decision of the Supreme Court upholding the notice that first ran counter to the alleged Federal right. In a petition for reargument, filed by the now plaintiff in error, it was suggested that the necessary effect of the decision was to deprive him of his property without due process of law, contrary to the Fourteenth Amendment. The Su-. preme Court entertained the petition, considered and overruled the contention that petitioner's rights under the Amendment were infringed, declared that its decision was to be interpreted as holding against the contention, and therefore refused a reargument. This is sufficient to confer jurisdiction upon this court. Mallett v. North Carolina, 181 U. S. 589, 592; Leigh v. Green, 193 U. S. 79, 85; McKay v. Kalyton, 204 U. S. 458, 463; Sullivan v. Texas, 207 U. S. 416, 422; Kentucky Union Co. v. Commonwealth of Kentucky, 219 U. S. 140, 158.
We therefore proceed to the merits.
In determining what is due process of law within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment, a distinction is to be observed between actions in personam and actions in rem, or quasi in rem. In Pennoyer v. Neff, 95 U. S. 714, 733, it was held that by force of the Amendment a judgment rendered by a state court in an action in personam against a non-resident served by publication of summons, but upon whom no personal service of process within the
Opinion of the Court.
State was made, and who did not appear to the action, was devoid of any validity either within or without the territory of the State in which the judgment was rendered; it being, however, conceded that a different rule obtains where, in connection with initial process against a person, property in the State is brought under the control of the court and subjected to its disposition, or where the judgment is sought as a means to reach such property or affect some interest in it; in other words, where the action is in the nature of a proceding in rem. As was said by the court (speaking by Mr. Justice Field, p. 734): "It is true that, in a strict sense, a proceeding in rem is one taken directly against property, and has for its object the disposition of the property, without reference to the title of individual claimants; but, in a larger and. more general sense, the terms are applied to actions between parties, where the direct object is to reach and dispose of property owned by them, or of some interest therein. Such are cases commenced by attachment against the property of debtors, or instituted to partition real estate, foreclose a mortgage, or enforce a lien. So far as they affect property in the State, they are substantially proceedings in rem in the broader sense which we have mentioned."
But it is also settled that where a State has jurisdiction over a res-as of course it has over the partition of lands lying within its borders-the judgment of the court to which that jurisdiction is confided, in order to be binding with respect to the interest of a non-resident who is not served with process within the State, must be based upon constructive notice given by publication, mailing, or otherwise, substantially in the manner prescribed by the law of the State. Cheely v. Clayton, 110 U. S. 701, 705; Guaranty Trust Co. v. Green Cove Railroad, 139 U. S. 137, 148; Windsor v. McVeigh, 93 U. S. 274, 283; Hassall v. Wilcox, 130 U. S. 493, 504; Thompson v. Thompson, 226 U.S. 551, 562.
Opinion of the Court.
In the case before us, there is no disputed question as to what steps were taken in order to give notice to Geilfuss. of the partition suit. The Supreme Court of the State, in accepting what was done as being a sufficient compliance with the provisions of the statute, in effect construed the statute as permitting such notice to be given as was in fact given.
But, the question whether the process thus sanctioned by the court of last resort of the State constitutes due process of law within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment being properly presented to this court for decision, we must exercise an independent judgment upon it. Scott v. McNeal, 154 U. S. 34, 45; Ballard v. Hunter, 204 U. S. 241, 260; Jacob v. Roberts, 223 U. S. 261.
The fundamental requisite of due process of law is the opportunity to be heard. Louisville & Nashville R. R. Co. v. Schmidt, 177 U. S. 230, 236; Simon v. Craft, 182 U. S. 427, 436. And it is to this end, of course, that summons or equivalent notice is employed. But the inherent authority of the States over the titles to lands within their respective borders carries with it, of necessity, the jurisdiction to determine rights and interests claimed therein by persons resident beyond the territorial limits of the State, and upon whom the ordinary judicial process cannot be served. The logical result is that a State, through its courts, may proceed to judgment respecting the ownership of lands within its limits, upon constructive notice to the parties concerned who reside beyond the reach of process. That this constitutes "due process" within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment was recognized in Pennoyer v. Neff, supra, and is no longer open to question. Huling v. Kaw Valley Railway, 130 U. S. 559, 563; Arndt v. Griggs, 134 U. S. 316, 320 et seq.; Lynch v. Murphy, 161 U. S. 247, 251; Roller v. Holly, 176 U. S. 398, 403. It is not disputed that the statutory scheme of publication and mailing, as established in
Opinion of the Court.
Minnesota, for giving notice to non-resident defendants in actions quasi in rem, is in its general application sufficient to comply with the Fourteenth Amendment. But the statute provides that "the summons shall be addressed by name to all the owners and lien holders who are known"; and the contention is that the mistake of name in the present instance was fatal.
The "due process of law" clause, however, does not impose an unattainable standard of accuracy. If a defendant within the jurisdiction is served personally with process in which his name is misspelled, he cannot safely ignore it on account of the misnomer. The rule, established by an abundant weight of authority, is, that if a person is sued by a wrong name, and he fails to appear and plead the misnomer in abatement, the judgment binds him. Lafayette Ins. Co. v. French, 18 How. 404, 409; Crawford v. Satchwell, 2 Strange, 1218; Oakley v. Giles, 3 East, 167; Smith v. Patten, 6 Taunt. 115; S. C., 1 Marsh. 474; Smith v. Bowker, 1 Massachusetts, 76, 79; Root v. Fellowes, 6 Cush. 29; First Nat'l Bank v. Jaggers, 31 Maryland, 38, 47; S. C., 100 Am. Dec. 53, 54; McGaughey v. Woods, 106 Indiana, 380; Vogel v. Brown Township, 112 Indiana, 299; S. C., 2 Am. St. Rep. 187; Lindsey v. Delano, 78 Iowa, 350, 354; Hoffield v. Board of Education, 33 Kansas, 644, 648.
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Of course, in a published notice or summons, intended to reach absent or non-resident defendants, where the name is a principal means of identifying the person concerned, somewhat different considerations obtain. The general rule, in cases of constructive service of process by publication, tends to strictness. Galpin v. Page, 18 Wall. 350, 369, 373; Priest v. Las Vegas, 232 U. S. 604. But, even in names, "due process of law" does not require ideal accuracy. In the spelling and pronunciation of proper names there are no generally accepted standards; and the well-established doctrine of idem sonans-generally ap