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National Exchange Bank v. Wiley, 195 U.S. 257 (1904)

National Exchange Bank of Tiffin v. Wiley

No. 53

Argued November 7, 1904

Decided November 28, 1904

195 U.S. 257


A warrant of attorney executed by the maker of a note and authorizing, in case of nonpayment, an attorney to appear, waive process, confess judgment, waive error and right of appeal in favor of the "holder" of the note, must be construed strictly in favor of the maker, and does not, in the absence of express terms, authorize the confession of judgment in favor of the original payee after it ceases to be the owner of the note, even though he may have the note in his possession. A judgment so entered would be a personal judgment without service of process or appearance, the the court would have no authority or jurisdiction to enter it, and the proceedings would be wanting in due process of law. Such a judgment can be attacked collaterally without violating the full faith and credit clause of the federal Constitution in an action thereon in a state other than that in which it was entered, on the ground that the party in whose favor it was rendered was not in fact the holder, because not the owner of the note, and that therefore the court entering the judgment was without jurisdiction.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

Page 195 U. S. 259

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