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BEAN v. WINDING RIVER CAMP GROUND

January 25, 1978

BOBBY BEAN and LILLIAN BEAN
v.
WINDING RIVER CAMP GROUND and TOM BALDWIN and GLORIA BALDWIN



The opinion of the court was delivered by: BRODERICK

 BRODERICK, District Judge.

 Plaintiffs, Bobby Bean and Lillian Bean, brought this action against Winding River Camp Ground, Tom Baldwin and Gloria Baldwin, seeking to recover damages for personal injuries suffered by Mr. Bean when he was thrown from a horse while vacationing in Colorado at a camp which was allegedly in the possession and control of the defendants. *fn1" Defendants have moved, pursuant to Rule 12(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, to dismiss the complaint for lack of in personam jurisdiction. For the reasons hereinafter discussed, defendants' motion is granted.

 The plaintiffs, who are residents of Pennsylvania, in an affidavit filed in opposition to the motion, allege that in the spring of 1976 Mr. Bean wrote a letter here in Pennsylvania to the Colorado Camp Ground Association and received a brochure entitled "Colorado Private Campgrounds". This brochure contained a "write-up" of camps in Colorado including that of the defendants. Mr. Bean later purchased a Rand McNally Campground and Trailer Park Guide here in Pennsylvania, which contained information about camps throughout the United States and which included information about the defendants' camp. *fn2" Mr. Bean then wrote directly to the defendants asking for more information and received a "News Flyer" and an "application". He made a reservation to stay at the camp by mailing to the defendants the "application" together with a $5.00 check and subsequently received an acknowledgment from the defendants.

 Plaintiffs claim personal jurisdiction over the defendants in this case on the ground that defendants were doing business in Pennsylvania and are thereby subject to personal jurisdiction by virtue of the Pennsylvania long-arm statute. *fn3" The motion to dismiss for lack of in personam jurisdiction will be considered first with respect to the Baldwins.

 In connection with individuals who are non-residents of Pennsylvania, the long-arm statute, § 8304, provides:

 
Any nonresident of the Commonwealth who . . . shall have done any business in the Commonwealth on or after August 30, 1970 . . . shall be conclusively presumed to have designated the Department of State as his agent for the receipt of service of process in any civil action or proceeding instituted in the courts of this Commonwealth against such individual, if and only if at the time the cause of action accrued or the harm or financial loss occurred, the nonresident . . . shall have been doing any business within this Commonwealth as heretofore provided.

 The long-arm statute defines what is meant by doing business, in § 8309(a), in the following language:

 
Any of the following shall constitute "doing business" for the purposes of this Chapter:
 
(1) The doing by any person in this Commonwealth of a series of similar acts for the purpose of thereby realizing pecuniary benefit or otherwise accomplishing an object.
 
(2) The doing of a single act in this Commonwealth for the purpose of thereby realizing pecuniary benefit or otherwise accomplishing an object with the intention of initiating a series of such acts.

 In determining whether there is personal jurisdiction over the Baldwins in this case we must first decide whether the activities of these nonresidents come within the above quoted statutory definition of doing business. Columbia Metal Culvert Co., Inc. v. Kaiser Industries Corp., 526 F.2d 724, 730 (3d Cir. 1975); Shong Ching Lau v. Change, 415 F. Supp. 627, 631 (E.D. Pa. 1976). The Court's attention has not been called to any decision by a Pennsylvania court which brings within the purview of the above quoted statutory definition of doing business, nonresident individuals whose contacts with this Commonwealth were as limited as those of the defendants in this case.

 The Baldwins are citizens of Colorado. There is no allegation that they have ever been in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, have ever entered into any contracts here in Pennsylvania, *fn4" have ever owned, leased or operated any property in Pennsylvania, or that they maintained any office, sales agent, or representative in Pennsylvania. Accordingly, the complaint must be dismissed as to the Baldwins for lack of in personam jurisdiction. *fn5"

 The remaining defendant in this case is Winding River Camp Ground. Neither the complaint nor the affidavits of either party reveal whether Winding River Camp Ground is a partnership, a joint venture, a fictitious ...


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