Delaware, Lackawanna & Western R. Co. v. Yurkonis - 238 U.S. 439 (1915)
U.S. Supreme Court
Delaware, Lackawanna & Western R. Co. v. Yurkonis, 238 U.S. 439 (1915)
Delaware, Lackawanna & Western R. Co. v. Yurkonis
Submitted May 3, 1915
Decided June 2I, 1915
238 U.S. 439
Plaintiff sued railroad company for personal injuries in the state court and defendant removed the case to the federal court on ground of diverse citizenship; more than two years after the cause of action arose plaintiff amended his complaint setting up that he was engaged in mining coal to be sent out of the state and that he could recover under the Federal Employers' Liability Act; on the trial, defendant moved to dismiss on the ground that, under that act the two-year statute applied, and plaintiff thereupon moved to amend by striking out allegations as to interstate commerce, which the court denied, and the case was submitted to the jury on the issues joined under the common law and the state statute. There was a verdict for the
plaintiff, and the judgment was affirmed by the circuit court of appeals. On writ of error from this Court to review the judgment held that:
In order for this Court to review the judgment of the circuit court of appeals, jurisdiction in the district court must have rested not on diverse citizenship alone, but must also in part have arisen because of averments in the complaint showing a cause of action under the Constitution or laws of the United States involving a substantial controversy.
In the absence of such averments in the complaint, the judgment of the circuit court of appeals is final.
The fact that coal may be used in interstate commerce after being mined and transported does not make an injury sustained by the miner an injury sustained while engaged in interstate commerce, or create a cause of action under the Federal Employers' Liability Act.
Where this Court cannot review the judgment of the circuit court of appeals because the jurisdiction of the federal court rests on diverse citizenship alone, it cannot pass on other questions, such as whether the plaintiff had not, prior to commencement of the action, removed to, and become a citizen of, defendant's state.
Writ of error to review 220 F. 429 dismissed.
The facts, which involve the jurisdiction of this Court to review the judgments of the state court under § 237, Judicial Code, are stated in the opinion.