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Civil Procedure Keyed to Glannon
Piper Aircraft Co. v. Reyno
Citation:454 U.S. 235 (1981)
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Respondent, as administratrix of the estates of five decedents killed on a charter flight that crashed in the Scottish highlands, brought a California state court negligence and strict liability action against Petitioner, the aircraft’s manufacturer, and the manufacturer of the plane’s propellers. The five decedents’ survivors filed a separate action in the United Kingdom against the owner of the airplane, its operator, and the pilot’s estate, who were not parties to the United States litigation. The administratrix filed the action in the United States because laws regarding liability, capacity to sue and damages were more favorable to her position than those of Scotland. Petitioner removed the action to federal court in California; the court granted Petitioner’s motion to transfer the proceeding to federal district court in Pennsylvania. After the matter was transferred, Petitioner moved to dismiss on the ground of forum non conveniens. The district court granted the motion; the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit reversed. The Supreme Court granted certiorari.
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