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Miller v. Nippon Carbon Company: CIVIL PROCEEDURE - defendant's limited contacts with state not sufficent for personal jurisdiction

United States Court of Appeals
Nos. 07-2314/2863
Aurora National Life Assurance *
Company, *
Plaintiff, *
v. **
Gary Ewing; FL Assignments *
Corporation; Singer Asset Finance *
Company; Patreka Harrison, formerly *
known as Patreka Lunsford, formerly *
known as Patreka Ewing, *
Defendants. * Appeals from the United States
_______________________ * District Court for the
* Southern District of Iowa.
Patreka Harrison, formerly known as *
Patreka Lunsford, formerly known as * [PUBLISHED]
Patreka Ewing, **
Cross Claimant *
Appellant/Cross-Appellee, *
v. **
Singer Asset Finance Company, *
Counter Claimant *
Appellee/Cross-Appellant. *
1The Honorable James E. Gritzner, United States District Judge for the Southern
District of Iowa.
Submitted: June 12, 2008
Filed: June 18, 2008
Before MURPHY, BYE, and SHEPHERD, Circuit Judges.
Patreka Harrison appeals the district court's1 decision concluding the structured
settlement documents which resolved her personal injury action did not prohibit her
from assigning her right to receive future annuity payments to Singer Asset Finance
Company (Singer) in exchange for immediate cash payments. See Aurora Nat'l Life
Assurance Co. v. Harrison, 462 F. Supp. 2d 951, 969-70 (S.D. Iowa 2006). Harrison
also appeals the district court's determination that the purchase agreements between
herself and Singer do not violate Iowa public policy.
In a cross appeal, Singer challenges the amount of attorney fees the district
court awarded to it pursuant to its contractual right to recover fees from Harrison.
Singer also challenges the limits the district court placed upon the amount of interest
it could recover from Harrison. Finally, Singer claims the district court failed to give
clear directions to the clerk of district court regarding the amount of money it is
entitled to receive from a deposit of funds placed in the district court by Harrison's
annuity company, Aurora National Life Assurance Company.
We have carefully reviewed the record and considered the parties' briefs.
Reviewing the issues raised in Harrison's appeal de novo, see Fitzgerald v. Action,
Inc., 521 F.3d 867, 871 (8th Cir. 2008) (setting forth the standard of review for a grant
of summary judgment), and the issues raised in Singer's cross appeal for an abuse of
discretion, see Computrol, Inc. v. Newtrend, L.P., 203 F.3d 1064, 1072 (8th Cir. 2000)
(setting forth the standard of review for an award of attorney fees pursuant to a
contractual provision allowing the recovery of "reasonable" fees) and Wingert &
Associates, Inc. v. Paramount Apparel Int'l, Inc., 458 F.3d 740, 743 (8th Cir. 2006)
(setting forth the standard of review for issues raised on appeal from the denial of a
motion for reconsideration under Rule 59(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure),
we find no error in the district court's disposition of Harrison's claims and no abuse
of discretion in the district court's disposition of Singer's claims. We therefore affirm
for the reasons stated by the district court in its thorough and well-reasoned orders.
See 8th Cir. Rule 47(b).


  What day were you injured?

  / /

  What caused your injuries?
Traffic/Bicycle Accident
Work-Related Injury
Wrongful Death
Dog Bite
Slip and Fall

  How have your injuries affected

  your life?


  What kinds of medical care
  professionals have you seen?


  What has your treatment cost?


  Is Insurance Involved?
My insurance may cover

Someone else's insurance
        may cover this.

I already filed a claim.
I rejected a settlement

I accepted a settlement

  Were there any witnesses?
Bystanders Witnessed This.
Police Responded and Filed
        a Police Report

Police Responded but Did
        Not File a Police Report



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