Case of the Day: Gramercy Insurance Co. v. Kavanagh

Memo to foreign defendants: If you want to avoid service of process by concealing your foreign address from the plaintiff, don’t hire a US lawyer to enter an appearance in the action. The case of the day, Gramercy Insurance Co. v. Kavanagh (N.D. Tex. 2011), is a case in point. Gramercy sued Kennedy and others seeking a declaration that it was not obligated to indemnify the defendants under a guaranty. The defendants were British. The defendants’ lawyer (who represented Kennedy as well as the others) refused to give Gramercy’s lawyer Kennedy’s address for service of process purposes. So on Gramercy’s motion, the court authorized alternate service on Kennedy’s lawyer under Rule 4(f). The moral of the story: if you want to insist on putting the plaintiff through its paces and forcing the plaintiff to effect service of process under the Hague Convention, don’t appear in the US case.

About Ted Folkman

Ted Folkman is a shareholder with Murphy & King, a Boston law firm, where he has a complex business litigation practice. He is the author of International Judicial Assistance (MCLE 2d ed. 2016), a nuts-and-bolts guide to international judicial assistance issues, and of the chapter on service of process in the ABA's forthcoming treatise on International Aspects of US Litigation, and he is the publisher of Letters Blogatory, the Web's first blog devoted to international judicial assistance, which the ABA recognized as one of the best 100 legal blogs in 2012, 2014, and 2015.

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