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IN REM JURISDICTION

Rem is Latin for 'thing.' When a court exercises in rem jurisdiction, it exercises authority over a thing, rather than a person. For example, if a divorcing couple asks a court to supervise the sale of their family home, the court exercises in rem jurisdiction over the house. Usually, the property must be located in the same county as the court for it to have in rem jurisdiction.

E.g. A court which grants a divorce exercises in rem jurisdiction over the marriage. One spouse must live in the same county as the court (therefore the marriage is in the county) for the court to exercise in rem jurisdiction over the marriage.

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