Steese v. Viney
A marshal's service of a writ, summons and complaint at an abode that the defendants left nearly two years before is ineffective to provide jurisdiction. The plaintiff sued the defendant driver and the defendant owner of a motor vehicle, alleging that they were negligent. On March 22, 2013, a marshal allegedly left copies of the complaint at the defendants' usual abode at 60 Benjamin Street in Old Greenwich. On May 30, 2013, the defendants moved to dismiss and argued that the lease for 60 Benjamin Street expired in June 2011, and they left Connecticut in July 2011. The plaintiff objected that the defense motion to dismiss was not filed timely, within 30 days of the April 30, 2013, appearance filed by the defendants' attorney. The first day after the defendant's attorney files an appearance is the first day of the 30-day period within which the defendant can file a motion to dismiss. The court found that the defense motion to dismiss was filed timely, on May 30, 2013. The defendants filed unsigned affidavits in which they alleged that in July 2011 they moved to the Middle East and since then they moved to Barbados. The defendants subsequently filed a supplement to the motion to dismiss, in which they signed the same affidavits. It was undisputed that the marshal did not effectuate proper abode service on the defendants, who did not reside in Old Greenwich when the marshal served the writ, summons and complaint. The court granted the defendants' motion to dismiss.