Black's Law Dictionary, Sixth Edition,
Void judgment. One which has has no legal force or effect,
invalidity of which may be asserted by any person whose rights
are affected at any time and at any place directly or
collaterally. Reynolds v. Volunteer State Life Ins. Co.,
Tex.Civ.App., 80 S.W.2d 1087, 1092. One which from its
inception is and forever continues to be absolutely null,
without legal efficacy, ineffectual to bind parties or support a
right, of no legal force and effect whatever, and incapable of
confirmation, ratification, or enforcement in any manner or to
any degree. Judgment is a "void judgment" if court that
rendered judgment lacked jurisdiction of the subject matter, or
of the parties, or acted in a manner inconsistent with due
process. Klugh v. U.S., D.C.S.C., 610 F.Supp. 892, 901.
Void judgments are those rendered by a court which lacked
jurisdiction, either of the subject matter or the parties. See:
Wahl v. Round Valley Bank 38 Ariz, 411, 300 P. 955(1931),
Tube City Mining & Millng Co. v. Otterson, 16 Ariz. 305, 146p
203(1914); and Millken v. Meyer, 311 U.S. 457, 61 S. CT. 339,85
L. Ed. 2d 278 (1940).
I can go into void judgments at great length with enough
court case cites to make anybody's eyes glaze over but I shall
refrain. Let it be said that the really big deal with subject
matter jurisdiction is that it can never be presumed, never be
waived, and cannot be constructed even by mutual consent of the
Subject matter jurisdiction is two part;
the statutory or common law authority for the court
to hear the case
and the appearance and testimony of a competent fact
witness, in other words, sufficiency of pleadings.
Subject matter failings are usually the following:
(1) No petition in the record of the case,
VanKeuren, 340 Ill. 118,122 (1930).
(2) Defective petition filed (same case as above).
(3) Fraud committed in the procurement of jurisdiction,
Fredman Brothers Furniture v. Dept. of Revenue, 109 Ill. 2d 202,
486 N.E. 2d 893(1985)
(4) Fraud upon the court, In re Village of Willowbrook,
37 Ill, App. 3d 393(1962)
(5) A judge does not follow statutory procedure,
Armstrong v. Obucino, 300 Ill 140, 143 (1921)
(6) Unlawful activity of a judge, Code of Judicial Conduct.
(7) Violation of due process, Johnson v. Zerbst, 304 U.S.
458, 58 S.Ct. 1019(193 ;Pure Oil Co. v. City of Northlake, 10
Ill.2d 241, 245, 140 N.E. 2d 289 (1956);Hallberg v Goldblatt
Bros., 363 Ill 25 (1936), (If the court exceeded it's
statutory authority. Rosenstiel v. Rosenstiel, 278 F. Supp.
794 (S.D.N.Y. 1967)
A statutory right is a right granted to a person by
authority of a
statute. Statutes are created by
legislative (and in certain countries executive) bodies, and
form the codified law of a
jurisdiction. For example, a statute governing court process
might contain provisions giving an election on either party to
an appeal, and that right to appeal would be considered
(8) any acts in violation of 11 U.S.C. 362(a),in re
Garcia, 109 B.R. 335(N.D. Illinois, 1989).
(9) Where no justiciable issue is presented to the court
through proper pleadings, Ligon v. Williams, 264 Ill. App 3d
701, 637 N.E. 2d 633 (1st Dist. 1994).
(10) Where a complaint states no cognizable cause of action
against that party, Charles v. Gore, 248 Ill App. 3d 441,
618 N.E. 2d 554 (1st. Dist. 1993)
(11) where any litigant was represented before a court by a
person/law firm that is prohibited by law to practice law in
(12) When the judge is involved in a scheme of bribery (the
Alemann cases, Bracey v Warden, U.S. Supreme Court No.
96-6133(June 9, 1997)
(13) Where a summons was not properly issued.
(14) Where service of process was not made pursuant to
statute and Supreme Court Rules, Janove v. Bacon, 6 Ill. 2d
245, 249, 218 N.E. 2d 706, 708 (1953)
(15) when the rules of the Circuit court are not complied
(16) when the local rules of the special court are not
complied with. (One Where the judge does not act impartially,
Bracey v. Warden, U.S. Supreme Court No. 96-6133(June 9,
(17) where the statute is vague, People v. Williams, 638
N.E. 2d 207 (1st Dist. (1994)
(18) when proper notice is not given to all parties by the
movant, Wilson v. Moore, 13 Ill. App. 3d 632, 301 N.E. 2d 39
(1st Dist. (1973)
(19) where an order/judgment is based on a void
order/judgment, Austin v. Smith, 312 F 2d 337,
343(1962);English v. English, 72 Ill. App. 3d 736, 393 N.E. 2d
18 (1st Dist. 1979) or
(20) where the public policy of the State of Illinois is
violated, Martin-Tregona v Roderick, 29 Ill. App. 3d 553,
331 N.E. 2d 100 (1st Dist. 1975)
And another that can and should be checked on is does the
judge have a copy of his oath of office on file in his chambers?
If not, he is not a judge and yes, you can go into his office
and demand to see a copy of his oath of office at any time. The
laws covering judges and other public officials are to be found
at 5 U.S.C. 3331, 28 U.S.C. 543 and 5 U.S.C. 1983 and if the
judge has not complied with all of those provisions he is not a
judge but a trespasser upon the court. If he is proven a
trespasser upon the court (upon the law) not one of his
judgments, pronouncements or orders are valid. All are null and
In all, there are 20 indices which tell us whether or not a
court had subject matter jurisdiction and when examining a
judgment one has to know each and every one of them by heart. If
he knows them by heart he can go through a judgment like Sherman
going though Georgia and point out all of the errors which might
make the case a void judgment, null and void upon its face.
Sufficiency of Pleadings: (Cross-appeals)
A party challenging an ALJ's decision must do more than
recite evidence favorable to its case, the party must
demonstrate with some degree of specificity the manner in which
substantial evidence does not exist or why the decision is
contrary to law. Cox v. Benefits Review Board, 791 F.2d 445,
9 BLR 2-46 (6th Cir. 1986).
A party may not attack a decision with a view toward
enlarging his or her own rights or lessening the rights of an
adversary absent a cross-appeal. However, a cross-appeal is
unnecessary when a prevailing party merely advances an argument
that would provide another avenue by which the fact finder could
reach the same favorable judgment. Hansen v. Director, OWCP,
No. 91-9559 (10th Cir. Jan. 20, 1993).
An appellee need not cross-appeal in order to make an
argument that supports the decision reached by the alj but
attacks the reasoning used by the alj in reaching his decision.
Malcomb v. Island Creek Coal Co., 15 F.3d 364, 18 BLR 2-113
(4th Cir. 1994).
jurisdiction (from the
ius, iuris meaning "law" and dicere meaning "to
speak") is the practical
authority granted to a formally constituted
body or to a
political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on
legal matters and, by implication, to administer
justice within a defined area of responsibility.
As a topic, jurisdiction draws its substance from
Public International Law,
Conflict of Laws,
Constitutional Law and the powers of the
legislative branches of
government to allocate resources to best serve the needs of
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