In that case, a trustor in Florida established a trust with a bank in Delaware had died, leaving her grandchildren as the beneficiaries. Prior to her death, she had lived in Delaware and later moved to Florida, and still performed acts of administration and received some proceeds of the trust.
The heirs had filed an action in Florida against the bank in Delaware claiming that the trust should go to the Estate of the deceased. The court held in favor of the heirs, and declared that the money held in the trust should be included in the Estate.
While the prior case was pending resolution, the grandchildren had also filed in Delaware an action for determination of distribution of the trust. After determination of the Florida case, the heirs had tried to introduce the decision in their favor in the Delaware case as a bar by res judicata, which was denied by the latter, stating that the Florida court did not have jurisdiction over the bank. Furthermore, the Delaware court held the trust to be valid and in favor of the grandchildren.
By appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, both cases were consolidated and the High Court held in favor of the Delaware court, stating that the Florida court could not exercise jurisdiction over a non-resident with only sporadic and inadvertent contacts with that State.
The ruling stems from the settled rule that a party may not be called upon to defend an action in a foreign tribunal anent proof that h