CIV PRO
HELICOPTERS NACIONALES DE COLOMBIA, S.A. V. HALL, Supreme Ct. of US, 1984. 466 US 408, 104 S.Ct. 1868, 80 L.Ed.2d 404. History: Respondents instituted wrongful death suits in Dist. Ct. of Harris County, TX against Con/WSH, Bell Helicopter Comp. and Helicopters; Helicopters filed special appearances and moved to dismiss action for lack of in personam jurisdiction; motion denied; after consolidated jury trial, judgment entered against Helicopters on a verdict of $1,141,200 in favor of respondents TX Ct. of Civil Appeals reversed judgment of Dist. Ct. saying there was no in personam jurisdiction Facts: Helicopters is a Colombian corporation w/its principal place of business in Bogota, Columbia; Helicopters provides helicopter transportation for oil and construction companies in South America; in 1976, 1 of their helicopters crashed in Peru and 4 US citizens died; Respondents are the survivors/reps of those dead people At time of accident, Respondents dead people were employed by Consorcio (Peru) and working in Peru {Consorcio is alter-ego of WSH that had its headquarters in TX}; Con/WSH needed helicopters to move stuff in and out of construction area In 1974, CEO of Helicopters (Restrepo) flew to TX to meet w/3 joint venturers to discuss prices, etc. and Con/WSH decided to accept contract; contract was ultimately written in Spanish on official gov’t stationary and said the residence of all 3 parties would be Lima, Peru; also said controversies would be settled in Peruvian courts; also said Con/WSH would make payments to Helicopter’s account w/B of A in NYC Helicopters also bought helicopters from Bell Helicopter Comp in Forth Worth, TX between 1970-77 and sent personnel to visit there; Helicopters received into its NYC and FL bank accounts over $5M from Con/WSH drawn from 1st City Nat’l Bank of Houston, TX; there was never a time there wasn’t at least one Helicolpters employees in TX Issue(s): Were Helicopter’s contacts w/TX sufficient enough for TX to assert jurisdiction over the corporation in an action not arising out of or related to Helicopter’s activities in TX? Holding: Helicopter’s contacts were insufficient to satisfy due process clause of 14th Amendment; judgment of Supreme Ct. of TX reversed Analysis: Supreme Ct. of TX reversed intermediate court saying TX’s long arm statute reaches as far as due process clause of 14th Amendment permits

To top