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Northwestern National Insurance Co. v. Donovan

916 F.2d 372 (1990)

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Northwestern National Insurance Co. v. Donovan

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

916 F.2d 372 (1990)

Facts

William Donovan (defendant), a wealthy businessman, borrowed money and issued a promissory note guaranteeing the loan’s repayment. Northwestern National Insurance Company (Northwestern) (plaintiff) was the surety on the note’s performance bond. To obtain the bond, Donovan signed a standard, boilerplate, two-page, six-paragraph indemnification agreement. One paragraph named Wisconsin as the forum for any litigation arising under the policy. When Donovan defaulted on the notes, Northwestern made good on the bond and then sued Donovan for indemnification. Northwestern filed the suit in a Wisconsin federal district court. The court refused to enforce the forum-selection clause and dismissed the suit for want of personal jurisdiction. Northwestern appealed to the Seventh Circuit.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Posner, J.)

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