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LLOYD v. VICTORY CARRIERS (12/01/60)

December 1, 1960

LLOYD
v.
VICTORY CARRIERS, INC., APPELLANT.



Appeal, No. 315, Jan. T., 1960, from order of Court of Common Pleas No. 4 of Philadelphia County, Sept. T., 1959, No. 1578, in case of Leeverne Lloyd v. Victory Carriers, Inc. v. Jarka Corporation of Philadelphia. Order affirmed; reargument refused February 28, 1961.

COUNSEL

Eugene R. Lippman, with him William C. Schultz, Jr., Albert R. Beal, and Krusen, Evans & Shaw, for appellant.

Joseph R. Thompson, for appellee.

Before Jones, C.j., Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Bok and Eagen, JJ.

Author: Cohen

[ 402 Pa. Page 485]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE COHEN.

This is an appeal from the order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County sustaining additional defendant-appellee's preliminary objections and dismissing the joinder complaint of defendant-appellant.

The plaintiff, Leeverne Lloyd, a longshoreman (employee) sued in trespass for injuries allegedly received through the negligence of the original defendant, Victory Carriers, Inc. (shipowner), and the unseaworthiness of the vessel. The plaintiff was employed by the additional defendant, Jarka Corporation of Philadelphia (stevedore), which sent him aboard the vessel to perform stevedoring services.

The shipowner impleaded the stevedore on the ground that if the shipowner were liable to the employee

[ 402 Pa. Page 486]

    for negligence and unseaworthiness, such negligence and unseaworthiness were the result of the stevedore's failure to properly perform its services. Therefore, it was claimed, the stevedore was liable over to the shipowner.

The stevedore objected to the third-party complaint on the ground of misjoinder of causes of action. The court below sustained the preliminary objection and dismissed the third-party complaint. This appeal followed.

The overriding issue in this case is the extent to which federal maritime law applies and the extent to which state procedural rules apply. It is settled beyond question that in an action such as this, in which a longshoreman or a seaman is involved, federal maritime law must govern all substantive matters regardless of whether the suit is brought in the state or federal court. Chelentis v. Luckenbach Steamship Company, 247 U.S. 372 (1918); Garrett v. Moore-McCormack Company, 317 U.S. 239 (1942); Pope & Talbot, Inc. v. Hawn, 346 U.S. 406 (1953). Normally, the procedural law of the forum will be applied unless the particular element of procedure so influences the litigants' substantive rights as to require the adoption of the federal practice in that area. See ...


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