RESPONDENT: Di-Chem, Inc.
LOCATION: Silver Bridge, Point Pleasant, West Virginia
DOCKET NO.: 73-1121
DECIDED BY: Burger Court (1972-1975)
LOWER COURT: Supreme Court of Georgia
CITATION: 419 US 601 (1975)
ARGUED: Nov 18, 1974
DECIDED: Jan 22, 1975
Lemuel Hugh Kemp -
L. Hugh Kemp - for respondent
Warren N. Coppedge, Jr. - for petitioner
Facts of the case
Media for North Georgia Finishing, Inc. v. Di-Chem, Inc.Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - November 18, 1974 in North Georgia Finishing, Inc. v. Di-Chem, Inc.
Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - January 22, 1975 in North Georgia Finishing, Inc. v. Di-Chem, Inc.
Warren E. Burger:
The judgment and opinion of the Court in No. 73-1121, North Georgia Finishing Company against Di-Chem, Incorporated will be announced by Mr. Justice White.
Byron R. White:
This is an appeal from the decision of the Georgia Supreme Court sustaining the Georgia prejudgment garnishment statute.
That law permits a creditor suing his debtor to attach and put beyond use during the litigation certain property of the debtor in the hands of third persons.
This was done by serving on a third person a writ of garnishment issued by a court clerk ex parte and at the behest of the creditor all without notice or hearing and without participation by a judicial officer.
As explained in the opinion filed today, it is the Court's view that Georgia statute is invalid under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
That the Georgia Supreme Court failed to take account of this Court's decision in Fuentes against Shevin in 407 U.S. and that the later decision in Mitchell against Grant does not save the Georgia procedure.
Accordingly, the judgment below is reversed.
Mr. Justice Stewart has filed a concurring statement.
Mr. Justice Powell has filed an opinion concurring in the judgment.
Mr. Justice Blackmun has filed a dissenting opinion in which Mr. Justice Rehnquist has joined and in paragraph 5 of which the Chief Justice joins.
Warren E. Burger:
Thank you Mr. Justice White.