Red Oaks West v. Specialty Trucks & Equipment
MEMORANDUM DECISION and Orderdenying 4 Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Jurisdiction. See order for further details. Signed by Judge Dee Benson on 7/21/15. (jlw)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF UTAH
RED OAKS WEST, INC.,
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND
SPECIALTY TRUCKS & EQUIPMENT,
Case No. 2:15-cv-00128
Judge Dee Benson
Plaintiff Red Oaks West, Inc. (“Red Oaks”) filed the instant lawsuit against Defendant
Specialty Trucks & Equipment, Inc. (“ST&E”), claiming that ST&E intentionally made several
material misrepresentations while negotiating the sale of a truck to Red Oaks.
Before the court is ST&E’s Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction and
Improper Venue. (Dkt. No. 4.) The court heard oral argument on the motion on June 23, 2015.
At the hearing, Plaintiff was represented by David Kono. Defendant was represented by Alyson
McAllister. Prior to the hearing, the court considered the memoranda and other materials
submitted by the parties. Since taking the matter under advisement, the court has further
considered the law and facts relating to the motion. Now being fully advised, the court renders
the following Memorandum Decision and Order.
The relevant facts in this case are not disputed. ST&E is a corporation organized and
operated by a husband and wife under the laws of the State of Iowa. ST&E buys, sells and
repairs specialty trucks. In early 2013, a listing for the sale of a 2005 Ford F-750 Truck (the
“Truck”) by ST&E was posted on www.treetrader.com—a third party website that holds itself
out as “The World’s Largest Site For Tree & Landscape Related Equipment!” The listing
advertised the Truck and provided ST&E’s contact information.
In March 2013, Red Oaks—a tree services business incorporated and operated
exclusively in Utah—found the listing online and contacted ST&E. Red Oaks was interested in
the Truck because the Truck was equipped with a “forestry package” that would be helpful for
Red Oaks’ business. Over the next few days, Red Oaks and ST&E exchanged approximately 30
telephone calls and 20 e-mails while negotiating the sale of the Truck. Throughout the entire
negotiation, ST&E communicated to Red Oaks exclusively from Iowa and Red Oaks
communicated to ST&E exclusively from Utah. In fact, Red Oaks did not even go to Iowa to
inspect the Truck. Nevertheless, on April 8, 2013, Red Oaks agreed to purchase the Truck “as
is” from ST&E for $46,000. Although ST&E offered to have its delivery company ship the
Truck to Utah, Red Oaks decided to ship the Truck through other means.
Immediately after receiving the Truck, Red Oaks discovered the Truck’s alleged defect.
Red Oaks claims that the Truck does not have enough power to “drive forward in a safe and
consistent manner.” (Dkt. No. 5 at 13.) Upon discovering this alleged defect, Red Oaks
consulted with a law firm in Des Moines, Iowa and threatened to sue ST&E in federal court in
Iowa if some sort of agreement could not be reached between Red Oaks and ST&E regarding the
Truck. When no such agreement was reached, Red Oaks followed through and filed suit against
ST&E. However, rather than filing the suit in federal court in Iowa, it filed suit in a state court in
Utah. ST&E subsequently removed the case to federal court.
In its Complaint, Red Oaks claims that ST&E made a number of representations of
material facts during the negotiations to sell the Truck. Specifically, ST&E allegedly
represented that the Truck was equipped with a forestry package, that the Truck was equipped
with a Ford “drop-in” motor, and that Red Oaks could “rest assured” that the vehicle worked
because ST&E had “gone over” the entire Truck. (Dkt. No. 2-2 at 9.) Red Oaks argues that the
“foregoing [r]epresentations were of then-existing material fact and their reasonable
implication—that the Truck would operate in a safe and consistent manner—was false.” Id. Red
Oaks also claims that ST&E made an omission of material fact by not disclosing that the Truck
would not move forward or backward in a safe and consistent manner. Id. Based on these
misrepresentations and omissions, Red Oaks alleges that ST&E breached the implied covenant
of good faith and fair dealing, committed fraud, and made negligent misrepresentations. Id.
On March 6, 2015, ST&E filed its Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction
and Improper Venue, arguing that this court has neither general nor specific personal jurisdiction
in this case. ST&E also argues that venue is improper because the alleged facts do not satisfy
any of the conditions listed in 28 U.S.C. §1391, the federal venue statute.
Red Oaks responded on April 6, 2015. Red Oaks concedes that this court cannot exercise
general personal jurisdiction over ST&E. Nevertheless, Red Oaks argues that the court can
exercise specific personal jurisdiction because ST&E had sufficient contacts with Utah relating
to the alleged improper conduct. Similarly, Red Oaks argues that venue is proper because a
substantial part of the events giving rise to the claims occurred in Utah.
Due to the undisputed facts, this case squarely frames the issue of what is required for a
court to be authorized to decide a controversy involving a nonresident defendant. The simple
question posed here is whether a family company in Iowa can be haled into a Utah court based
solely upon the company’s non-interactive internet advertisement to sell a truck and the
company’s dealings with a single Utah company regarding the sale of that truck.
“To obtain personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant in a diversity action, a
plaintiff must show that jurisdiction is legitimate under the laws of the forum state and that the
exercise of jurisdiction does not offend the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.”
Grynberg v. Ivanhoe Energy, Inc., 490 Fed. Appx. 86, 91 (10th Cir. 2012) (quoting Far West
Capital, Inc. v. Towne, 46 F.3d 1071, 1074 (10th Cir. 1995)).
I. Jurisdiction under Utah State Law
The Utah legislature has expressly stated that the long arm statute must be interpreted
broadly “so as to assert jurisdiction over nonresident defendants to the fullest extent permitted by
the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.” Utah
Code § 78B-3-201; see also Starways, Inc. v. Curry, 980 P.2d 204, 206 (Utah 1999) (“We have
held that the Utah long-arm statute ‘must be extended to the fullest extent allowed by due
process of law.’”) (quoting Synergetics v. Marathon Ranching Co., 701 P.2d 1106, 1110 (Utah
1985)). Similarly, the Utah Supreme Court has stated that it “frequently make[s] a due process
analysis first because any set of circumstances that satisfies due process will also satisfy the
long-arm statute.” SII MegaDiamond, Inc. v. American Superabrasives Corp., 969 P.2d 430,
433 (Utah 1998). Therefore, following the direction of the Utah Supreme Court, and because the
Utah long-arm statute confers the maximum jurisdiction permissible consistent with the Due
Process Clause, the court proceeds to determine whether the exercise of personal jurisdiction
over Defendant meets federal due process standards.
II. Due Process Analysis
“The Due Process Clause protects an individual’s liberty interest in not being subject to
the binding judgments of a forum with which he has established no meaningful ‘contacts, ties, or
relations.’” Burger King Corp. v. Rudzewicz, 471 U.S. 462, 471-72 (1985) (quoting International
Shoe Co. v. Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 319 (1945)); see also OMI Holdings, Inc. v. Royal Ins.
Co. of Canada, 149 F.3d 1086, 1090 (10th Cir. 1998). Accordingly, a “court may exercise
personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant only so long as there exist ‘minimum
contacts’ between the defendant and the forum State.” World Wide Volkswagen Corp. v.
Woodson, 444 U.S. 286, 291 (1980) (quoting International Shoe, 326 U.S. at 316).
The minimum contacts standard can be met in two ways. First, a court may assert
specific personal jurisdiction over a nonresident defendant where “the defendant has
‘purposefully directed’ his activities at residents of the forum, and the litigation results from
alleged injuries that arise out of or are related to those activities.” Burger King, 471 U.S. at 472.
Where no nexus exists between the forum-related activity and the injury sustained, the court may
nevertheless exercise general personal jurisdiction over the defendant when the defendant’s
contacts are “so pervasive that personal jurisdiction is conferred by the ‘continuous and
systematic’ nature of the defendant’s in-state activities.” OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1090-91.
Here, both parties acknowledge that there is no general jurisdiction, so only a specific personal
jurisdiction analysis is needed.
A. Specific Jurisdiction
The court’s specific jurisdiction inquiry is two-fold. First, the court must determine
whether the defendant has such “minimum contacts” with the forum state “that he should
reasonably anticipate being haled into court there. World-Wide Volkswagen v. Woodson, 444
U.S. 286, 297 (1980). These “minimum contacts” are established “‘if the defendant has
“purposefully directed” his activities at residents of the forum, and the litigation results from
alleged injuries that “arise out of or relate to” those activities.’” OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1091
(quoting Burger King, 471 U.S. at 472.) Second, if the defendant’s activities create sufficient
minimum contacts, then the court must consider “whether the exercise of personal jurisdiction
over the defendant offends ‘traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.” Id. (quoting
Asahi Metal Indus. Co. v. Superior Court of California, 480 U.S. 102, 113 (1987)). “This latter
inquiry requires a determination of whether a district court’s exercise of personal jurisdiction
over a defendant with minimum contacts is ‘reasonable’ in light of the circumstances
surrounding the case.” OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1091.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit has explained that “an interplay
exists between the two components, such that ‘depending on the strength of the defendant’s
contacts with the forum state, the reasonableness component of the constitutional test may have a
greater or lesser effect on the outcome of the due process inquiry.’” Id. at 1091-92 (citation
1. Minimum Contacts
“[T]he Supreme Court has instructed that the ‘minimum contacts’ standard requires, first,
that the out-of-state defendant must have ‘purposefully directed’ its activities at residents of the
forum state, and second, that the plaintiff’s injuries must ‘arise out of’ defendant’s forum-related
activities.” Dudnikov v. Chalk & Vermilion Fine Arts, Inc., 514 F.3d 1063, 1071 (10th Cir.
2008) (quoting Burger King, 471 U.S. at 472.) The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth
Circuit has explained, however, that the “purposeful direction” requirement can appear in
“different guises.” Id. In contract cases, “we sometimes ask whether the defendant
‘purposefully availed’ itself” of the privilege of conducting business in the forum state; in the
tort context, meanwhile, “we often ask whether the nonresident defendant ‘purposefully directed’
its activities at the forum state.” Id. (citing Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc. v. Heliqwest Int’l, Ltd.,
385 F.3d 1291, 1296 (10th Cir. 2004). Under either approach, the “shared aim of ‘purposeful
direction’” is to “ensure that an out-of-state defendant is not bound to appear to account for
merely ‘random, fortuitous, or attenuated contacts’ with the forum state.” Id. (quoting Burger
King, 471 U.S. at 475.)
As noted by ST&E, one way to determine “purposeful direction” is through the “effects
test” as articulated in Calder v. Jones, 465 U.S. 783 (1984). The Tenth Circuit has interpreted
this test as authorizing personal jurisdiction if three showings are made: the defendant (a)
commits “an intentional action”; (b) that is “expressly aimed at the forum state”; (c) with the
“knowledge that the brunt of the injury would be felt in the forum state.” Dudnikov, 514 F.3d at
ST&E concedes that the first showing has been made because “the fact that Plaintiff has
pled fraudulent actions by ST&E in its Complaint suffices for purposes of Defendant’s Motion to
Dismiss for Lack of Personal Jurisdiction.” (Dkt. No. 4 at 14.) ST&E contends, however, that
neither of the other two showings can be made in this case. The court disagrees.
Regarding the second Calder requirement, the Tenth Circuit has clarified that “the
‘express aiming’ test focuses . . . on a defendant's intentions—where was the ‘focal point’ of its
purposive efforts.” Dudnikov, 514 F.3d at 1075. ST&E’s intentions are made clear through the
contacts it made with Utah. Such contacts include ST&E’s advertisement for the Truck on
www.treetrader.com, its communications and negotiations with Red Oaks, and the final
agreement to sell the Truck to Red Oaks.
Although ST&E had no specific contact with Utah through the Internet advertisement on
its own, the advertisement directly led to the e-mail and telephone negotiations between ST&E
and Red Oaks regarding the sale of the Truck. During these negotiations, ST&E learned that
Red Oaks is located and operates in Utah. It was, therefore, not just foreseeable but almost
certain that the Truck would be brought to Utah and used there if Red Oaks bought it.
Consequently, if ST&E knowingly made false representations to Red Oaks in order to induce
Red Oaks to buy the Truck—which the court must assume happened for purposes of this
motion—then ST&E’s intention was clearly to push the Truck into Utah. This intention is also
evident from the fact that ST&E offered to deliver the Truck to Utah as part of the final
agreement, even though Red Oaks ultimately turned this specific offer down and used a different
method of delivery.
The alleged facts demonstrate that ST&E was not merely selling an object in Iowa to a
passerby who would later bring the object to the forum state because of the fortuitous fact that
the passerby lived there. Instead, ST&E made specific assurances to a company that ST&E
knew was located and operated in the forum state with the hope that the company would buy the
allegedly defective Truck and relocate it there. The court finds that such actions were expressly
aimed at the forum state.
ST&E argues that Tenth Circuit precedent demonstrates that the express aiming test
cannot be satisfied in this case. (Dkt. No. 4 at 15 ; Dkt. No. 7 at 7–9.) However, the cases cited
by ST&E are distinguishable from the present case and even provide principles that establish that
personal jurisdiction is appropriate here. For example, in Far West Capital, Inc. v. Towne, 46
F.3d 1071 (10th Cir. 1995), the Court found that personal jurisdiction did not exist in Utah
despite the fact that the defendants, as part of a contract negotiation, exchanged many e-mails
and phone conversations with the plaintiff while the plaintiff was physically located in Utah.
The Court determined that these communications were merely supplemental and that the bulk of
the actual negotiations between the parties took place in person in Nevada. Id. Importantly, the
Court’s decision to deny jurisdiction in Utah was not based on a rule that phone calls and e-mails
between a forum resident and a nonresident are necessarily insufficient to establish personal
jurisdiction over the nonresident. The Court instead found that the defendants’ actions were
simply directed at a different state:
“[T]he most important negotiations took place in Nevada, and the enterprise was
designed to use Nevada resources to supply power to a Nevada utility. Moreover, the
lease and sublease expressly provided that their interpretation was governed by Nevada
law. Unlike Calder, where the defendant's actions “were expressly aimed at” the forum
jurisdiction and the forum jurisdiction was “the focal point” of the tort and its harm, the
focal point of this relationship was Nevada rather than Utah.”
Id. at 1080. In the present case, the relevant e-mails and phone calls themselves—which
simultaneously took place in both Utah and Iowa—constituted the important negotiations
between the parties. Additionally, the Truck was to be used in Utah and nothing in the final
agreement indicated that a different state’s law should govern. Thus, by analogy to the Tenth
Circuit’s determination that the focal point of the defendants’ actions in Far West was Nevada,
the focal point of ST&E’s actions in this case was Utah. See also Lee v. Frank’s Garage & Used
Cars, Inc., 2004 UT App 260, 97 P.3d 717 (ruling, for similar reasons, that personal jurisdiction
existed in Utah where a Utah resident bought a rare car from a Virginia dealership).
Similarly, the Court’s decision in Grynberg v. Ivanhoe Energy, Inc., 490 F. App'x 86
(10th Cir. 2012) does not preclude personal jurisdiction in this case, but actually promotes it. In
Grynberg, the plaintiffs had originally been granted seventeen mining concessions by the
Republic of Ecuador. Id. at 88. The plaintiffs claimed that the defendants stole their confidential
information and persuaded Ecuador to revoke plaintiffs’ concessions and award them instead to
the defendants. Id. at 89. The Court ruled that Colorado did not have jurisdiction over the
defendants even though one of the plaintiffs was a Colorado resident and two of the other
plaintiffs had their primary place of business in Colorado. Id. at 98. The Court ruled that “the
plaintiffs fail[ed] to show that the defendants expressly aimed their conduct at the forum state—
here, Colorado. Specifically, the ‘focal point’ of the alleged tort was Ecuador, where the oil field
was located . . . and where [plaintiff] was injured when Ecuador allegedly cancelled [its]
concessions.” Id. (ellipses in original) (citation omitted). In contrast to the facts in Grynberg,
the facts in the present case demonstrate that there is a more substantial connection to Utah than
just Plaintiff’s residency. Not only is Red Oaks a Utah company that does business exclusively
in the forum state, but ST&E was trying to send the Truck to the forum state, and all of Red
Oaks’ alleged injuries occurred there. Thus, for the same reasons that Ecuador—and not
Colorado—was the focal point of the alleged tort in Grynberg, Utah was the focal point of
ST&E’s action in this case.
Regarding the third Calder requirement, it is evident that ST&E knew that the brunt of
the injuries would be felt in Utah because ST&E knew that Red Oaks was located and operated
in Utah. That is where Red Oaks would lose business it might have obtained if the Truck
worked properly, that is where Red Oaks would have to store the faulty Truck, and that is where
Red Oaks would feel the financial strain that comes from spending thousands of dollars on
equipment that does not serve its intended purpose. Consequently, the court finds that all three
Calder requirements are met in this case.
Finally, having determined that ST&E “purposefully directed” its activities at the forum
state, the court has no difficulty concluding that Red Oak’s injuries “arise out of” ST&E’s
contacts with the forum jurisdiction. See Burger King, 471 U.S. at 472. Therefore, ST&E has
minimum contacts with Utah.
The court must still inquire whether the existence of personal jurisdiction would “offend
traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.” Dudnikov, 514 F.3d at 1080 (quoting
International Shoe, 326 U.S. at 316). This inquiry requires a determination of whether a district
court’s exercise of personal jurisdiction is “reasonable” in light of the circumstances surrounding
the case. OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1091. In this regard, the court should consider: “(1) the
burden on the defendant, (2) the forum state’s interest in resolving the dispute, (3) the plaintiff’s
interest in receiving convenient and effective relief, (4) the interstate judicial system’s interest in
obtaining the most efficient resolution of controversies, and (5) the shared interest of the several
states in furthering fundamental substantive social policies.” Id. at 1095; World-Wide
Volkswagen, 444 U.S. at 292.
The analyses of minimum contacts and reasonableness are complimentary, such that the
reasonableness prong of the due process inquiry evokes a sliding scale:
[T]he weaker the plaintiff’s showing on [minimum contacts], the less a defendant need
show in terms of unreasonableness to defeat jurisdiction. The reverse is equally true: an
especially strong showing of reasonableness may serve to fortify a borderline showing of
Pro Axess, Inc. v. Orlux Distribution, Inc., 428 F.3d 1270, 1280 (10th Cir. 2005) (quoting OMI
Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1092 (alterations in original) (quotations omitted)). However, in a case
such as this, where the court has found that the defendant “purposefully ... directed [its]
activities” at Utah, the defendant “must present a compelling case that the presence of some
other considerations would render jurisdiction unreasonable.” Burger King, 471 U.S. at 477.
ST&E is unable to meet this high standard.
a. Burden on Defendant of Litigating in the Forum
With respect to the first factor–the burden on defendant– ST&E has failed to sufficiently
support its allegation that litigating in Utah would impose an unreasonable burden on them.
ST&E contends only that it conducts all of its business in Iowa and “[i]n order to litigate this
case in Utah, ST&E will be forced to incur substantial additional legal costs and travel costs,
including appearing in Utah for depositions and appearing in this Court for trial.” (Dkt. No. 4 at
18.) This inconvenience does not set ST&E apart from a typical nonresident defendant.
Furthermore, modern transportation and communication, and in particular the implementation of
electronic case filing, noticing and teleconferences, have to some extent lessened the burden to
out-of-state defendants. Toytrackerz v. Koehler, Slip Copy, 2009 WL 1505705 (D. Kan.). While
“inconvenience may at some point become so substantial as to achieve constitutional magnitude,
this is not such a case.” Burger King, 471 U.S. at 484 (internal citation omitted).
b. Forum State’s Interest in Adjudicating the Dispute
With respect to the second factor, the court considers the interest of Utah in resolving the
dispute. States have “an important interest in providing a forum in which their residents can seek
redress for injuries caused by out-of-state actors.” OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1096. In this case,
the court finds that Utah has a strong interest in adjudicating this controversy. Red Oaks not
only resides in Utah, but has also potentially suffered significant injury and monetary damages
within the state. See Burger King, 471 U.S. at 482-83. The court is not persuaded by ST&E’s
argument that Red Oaks waived the forum state’s interest by initially hiring an Iowa attorney and
threating to file suit against ST&E in Iowa (Dkt. No. 4 at 18), and ST&E has not provided any
legal authority to support this proposition.
c. Plaintiff’s Interest in Convenient and Effective Relief
This factor hinges on whether the plaintiff may receive convenient and effective relief in
another forum. There is nothing in this case that indicates that Plaintiff’s chances of recovery
will be greatly diminished if it has to litigate the matter in Iowa. OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at
1097 (noting that the third factor considers whether “plaintiff's chances of recovery will be
greatly diminished by forcing him to litigate in another forum.”). However, because the Truck is
currently located in Utah and because it would apparently be difficult and expensive to relocate it
to Iowa, Plaintiff might be slightly more inconvenienced than a typical plaintiff if it were
required to litigate the case in Iowa.
d. Interstate Judicial System’s Interest in Obtaining Efficient Resolution
This factor asks whether the forum state is the most efficient place to litigate the dispute.
Pro Axess, 428 F.3d at 1281. In evaluating this factor, courts look to the location of witnesses,
the location of the underlying wrong, what forum’s substantive law governs the case, and
whether jurisdiction is necessary to prevent piecemeal litigation. Id. The location of the
witnesses in this case is likely split fairly evenly between Iowa and Utah. Likewise, the wrong
underlying the lawsuit—ST&E’s alleged fraud—occurred both in Iowa and Utah. Although the
purported misrepresentations were technically made from a phone or computer in Iowa, they
were received and relied upon in Utah. Finally, it has yet to be determined whether Utah law or
Iowa law would apply in this case, or if the law of the two forums even differs on the relevant
issues. OMI Holdings, Inc., 149 F.3d at 1097.
e. States’ Interest in Furthering Fundamental Substantive Social Policies
The fifth factor of the reasonableness inquiry focuses on whether the exercise of personal
jurisdiction by the forum state affects the “substantive social policy interests of other states or
foreign nations.” OMI Holdings, 149 F.3d at 1097. The court finds no facts suggesting that the
exercise of personal jurisdiction in Utah would affect the substantive social policy interests of
any other state or foreign nation.
After evaluating the relevant factors, the court finds that ST&E has failed to establish a
“compelling case” that the exercise of jurisdiction would be unreasonable. Burger King, 471
U.S. at 477. Accordingly, the court concludes that exercising personal jurisdiction over ST&E
would not offend traditional notions of fair play and substantial justice.
Venue is proper in any “judicial district in which a substantial part of the events or
omissions giving rise to the claim occurred.” See Employers Mut. Cas. Co. v. Bartile Roofs, Inc.,
618 F.3d 1153, 1165 (10th Cir. 2010) (quoting 28 U.S.C. § 1391(a)(2)). Courts “conduct a twopart analysis when reviewing challenges to venue under § 1391(a)(2).” Id. at 1166. First, courts
“examine the nature of the plaintiff’s claims and the acts or omissions underlying those claims.”
Id. Second, “[courts] determine whether substantial ‘events material to those claims occurred’ in
the forum [state].” Id. (quoting Gulf Ins. Co. v. Glasbrenner, 417 F.3d 353, 357 (2d Cir. 2005)).
Under this inquiry, “venue is not limited to the district with the most substantial events or
omissions.” Id. at 1165. In other words, “[a] venue does not have to be the ‘best’ venue to be a
‘proper’ venue.” Diesel Power Source, L.L.C. v. Crazy Carl’s Turbos Inc., 2015 WL 1034231 at
In this case, Red Oaks’ claims arise out of (1) ST&E’s alleged misrepresentations and
omissions during its negotiation of the sale of the Truck to Red Oaks; and (2) ST&E’s sale of the
Truck. These acts occurred in Utah, as did Red Oaks’ harm.
Red Oaks acknowledges in its brief that ST&E was not physically present in Utah when
it made the misrepresentations and omissions at issue. However, ST&E similarly knew that Red
Oaks was located in Utah during the negotiations. The misrepresentations were received and
relied on in Utah, and the ultimate harm—the consummation of the transaction and Red Oaks’
loss—occurred in Utah. These events are “substantial.” Venue is proper in this court.
Having determined that ST&E has sufficient minimum contacts with this forum, and
having further determined that the exercise of jurisdiction does not offend traditional notions of
fair play and substantial justice, the court concludes that ST&E is subject to personal jurisdiction
in this court. Additionally, because a substantial part of the events giving rise to Red Oaks’
claim occurred in Utah, the court concludes that venue is proper. Accordingly, a family owned
company in Iowa may indeed be haled into Utah courts under the facts of this case. ST&E’s
motion to dismiss is DENIED.
DATED this 21st day of July, 2015.
BY THE COURT:
United States District Judge
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