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VANDERBILT V. VANDERBILT, 354 U. S. 416 (1957)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Vanderbilt v. Vanderbilt, 354 U.S. 416 (1957)

Vanderbilt v. Vanderbilt

No. 302

Argued April 22-23, 1957

Decided June 24, 1957

354 U.S. 416


A husband and wife separated while living in California, and the wife moved to New York, where she has since resided. Subsequently, the husband sued for divorce in Nevada. The wife was not served with process, and did not appear in the Nevada court, but it entered a final decree of divorce, providing that both husband and wife were "freed and released from the bonds of matrimony and all duties and obligations thereof." Subsequently, the wife sued in New York for separation from the husband and alimony. The New York court did not have personal jurisdiction over the husband, but it sequestered his property in the State and entered an order directing the husband to make support payments to the wife.

Held: since the Nevada court had no personal jurisdiction over the wife, it had no power to extinguish any right she had under New York law to financial support from her husband, its decree was void insofar as it purported to do so, and the New York judgment did not violate the Full Faith and Credit Clause. Pp. 354 U. S. 416-419.

1 N.Y.2d 342, 135 N.E.2d 553, affirmed.

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