Koehring Co. v. Hyde Construction Co., Inc.,
382 U.S. 362 (1966)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Koehring Co. v. Hyde Construction Co., Inc., 382 U.S. 362 (1966)

Koehring Co. v. Hyde Construction Co., Inc.

No. 593

Decided January 17, 1966

382 U.S. 362


On March 10, 1964, the Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued an order stating that the District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi had erred in failing to comply with an earlier order to transfer the case to the District Court for the Northern District of Oklahoma and that, pending physical transfer of the record, "this order shall constitute a transfer to enable the parties to present the matter to the District Court of Oklahoma." The Oklahoma federal court assumed jurisdiction the next day, and entered an order temporarily restraining respondents from proceeding with a state court trial in Mississippi. Respondents disregarded the restraining order, and, on March 14, the Oklahoma federal court found them in civil contempt. Respondents continued with the state action and obtained a judgment against petitioner the enforcement of which the Oklahoma federal court enjoined, ordering a retrial in federal court in Oklahoma. The Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit reversed this decree on appeal, holding that the Oklahoma federal court lacked jurisdiction at the time it entered the original restraining order, since it had not yet received the case file from the transferor court.

Held: The Oklahoma District Court acquired jurisdiction on March 11 in accordance with the Fifth Circuit's order, and the Tenth Circuit erred in vacating the District Court's orders on the stated jurisdictional ground. The provision in 28 U.S.C. §1404 (a) that "a district court may transfer any civil action" does not preclude transfer by direct order of an appellate court where unusual circumstances, such as existed here, indicate the necessity thereof.

Certiorari granted; 348 F. 2d 643, reversed and remanded.

Page 382 U. S. 363

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