in personam

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In Personam

[Latin, Against the person.] A lawsuit seeking a judgment to be enforceable specifically against an individual person.

An in personam action can affect the defendant's personal rights and interests and substantially all of his or her property. It is based on the authority of the court, or jurisdiction, over the person as an individual rather than jurisdiction over specific property owned by the person. This contrasts with in rem jurisdiction, or actions that are limited to property of the defendant that is within the control of the court. A court with in personam jurisdiction in a particular case has enough power over the defendant and his or her property to grant a judgment affecting the defendant in almost any way.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

in personam

adj. (in purr-soh-nam) from Latin for "directed toward a particular person." In a lawsuit in which the case is against a specific individual, that person must be served with a summons and complaint to give the court jurisdiction to try the case, and the judgment applies to that person and is called an "in personam judgment." In personam is distinguished from in rem, which applies to property or "all the world" instead of a specific person. This technical distinction is important to determine where to file a lawsuit and how to serve a defendant. "In personam" and means that a judgment can be enforceable against the person wherever he is. On the other hand, if the lawsuit is to determine title to property (in rem) then the action must be filed where the property exists and is only enforceable there. (See: jurisdiction, in rem)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

in personam

‘personal’ (as opposed to REAL).
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

IN PERSONAM, remedies. A remedy in personam, is one where the proceedings are against the person, in contradistinction to those which are against specific things, or in rem. (q.v.) 3 Bouv. Inst. n. 2646.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Modern Convergence of In Rem and In Personam Procedures
an in personam action with an "auxiliary attachment against the
CONTENTS I Introduction II Two Views on the In Personam Exception A The Narrow and Wide View of the In Personam Exception B Reviewing the Narrow Approach to the In Personam Exception C Reviewing the Wide Approach to the In Personam Exception III A Framework of the In Personam Exception IV Constructive Trust V Knowing Receipt A The Authorities B Arguments from Principle VI Undue Influence, Unconscionable Conduct and Duress VII Restitutionary Claims Based on Mistake, Failure of Basis and Ignorance VIII Conclusion INTRODUCTION
Since the commercial activity exception under [section] 1605(a)(2) does not apply and since the Congo never waived immunity under [section] 1605 (a) (1), the district court did not have the requisite in personam jurisdiction to enter a turnover order.
However, since the property at issue necessarily would have been located in the jurisdiction either at the time or shortly before the commencement of the quasi-in-rem action and since the property necessarily is "related to" the prospective action, satisfying the dictates of International Shoe should not impose an insurmountable obstacle, particularly if independent grounds exist to assert in personam jurisdiction over the persons controlling the physical evidence.(10)
First, many of the significant cases have involved fact situations where the putative taxpayer's (or defendant's) presence in the state was for nonmarketing activities, such as the extreme example (for Due Process Clause purposes) in Burger King where "purposeful direction" was found where the defendant merely commenced an anticipated intricate, long-term relationship with a counter party located in the forum state (though Burger King, an in personam case, may not be directly applicable in a state tax context).
"In personam is not limited to cash," explained William K.
Such in personam damage is different from that cosistently rejected by the courts in past cases because it arises not from subjective or even objective inquiry, but instead is imposed by the operation of new statutory law itself as it applies to the results of the taking.
In Part III, I consider the doctrinal basis on which it is said that a Barnes v Addy claim may bring about the defeat of a registered title--namely, the in personam exception to indefeasibility.
(43) The Court held that the "immunity of a state from suit in personam in admiralty brought by a private person without its consent, is clear." (44) Under the Eleventh Amendment, a State which had not consented to suit did not fall within the jurisdiction of the court; therefore, it was immune to liability in an admiralty in personam action.