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Mid-Continent Wood Products v. Harris

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
936 F.2d 297 (7th Cir. 1991)


Facts

Lawrence Harris (defendant), through Harris Plywood, Inc., purchased lumber from Mid-Continent Wood Products (Mid-Continent) (plaintiff) on several occasions during the summer of 1980. Although he received the lumber, Harris did not make any payments to Mid-Continent, and Mid-Continent filed suit, alleging breach of contract. After several failed attempts to negotiate a payment schedule, Mid-Continent sought and received a default judgment against Harris. Mid-Continent did not act on the judgment, and executed a promissory note with Harris instead. When Harris also did not pay on the promissory note, Mid-Continent filed an action to collect and made several attempts to serve Harris, but was never able to do so.  Six years later, Mid-Continent found and attempted to execute on some of Harris’s assets. Harris filed a motion to vacate and dismiss the default judgment for Mid-Continent’s failure to provide him with proper notice of the suit. The district court denied Harris’s motion, and he appealed.

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Holding and Reasoning (Coffey, C.J.)

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