Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. v. Norris

PETITIONER:Hawaiian Airlines, Inc.

DOCKET NO.: 92-2058
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1993-1994)
LOWER COURT: Supreme Court of Hawaii

CITATION: 512 US 246 (1994)
ARGUED: Apr 28, 1994
DECIDED: Jun 20, 1994

Kenneth B. Hipp – on behalf of the Petitioners
Richard H. Seamon – on behalf of the United States, as amicus curiae, supporting the Respondent
Susan Oki Mollway – on behalf of the Respondent

Facts of the case


Media for Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. v. Norris

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument – April 28, 1994 in Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. v. Norris

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement – June 20, 1994 in Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. v. Norris

William H. Rehnquist:

The opinion of the Court in No. 92-2058, Hawaiian Airline versus Norris will be announced by Justice Blackmun.

Harry A. Blackmun:

This case comes to us from the Supreme Court of Hawaii.

The respondent, Norris, lost his job as an aircraft mechanic with the petitioner, Hawaiian Airlines when he refused to sign a maintenance record for a plane he considered unsafe.

He brought separate State Court suits against the Airline and its officers in which, he alleged wrongful discharge in violation of public policy expressed in federal statutes.

The State Court dismissed these tort claims as preempted by the Railway Labor Act.

The State Supreme Court reversed rejecting petitioner’s claim of preemption.

In an opinion filed with the Clerk today, we affirm that judgment and hold that the Railway Labor Act does not preempt respondent’s state law causes of action.

The court is unanimous on this one.