Filing Pseudonymously: Hawaii


  1. Hawaii
  1. Hawaii

    1. Caselaw

      Hawaii has three reported cases of actions against the state for claims invasions of privacy, inter alia, brought by Doe plaintiffs:

      • Doe v. City and County of Honolulu, 816 P.2d 306 (Haw. Ct. App. 1991) – Doe is a fireman employed by Defendant; he brings state and federal constitutional challenge against Defendant’s suspicionless annual urine drug tests and does so “‘anonymously to protect himself from breach of privacy, harassment, injury, ridicule, and/or embarrassment.’ The circuit court permitted plaintiff to pursue the action under the fictitious name of ‘JOHN DOE.’” Id. at 573 n.1 (citations omitted). The instant court did not further touch on Plaintiff’s pseudonymity.

      • Doe v. City and County of Honolulu, 6 P.3d 362 (Haw. Ct. App. 2000) – Doe is female police officer employed by Defendant who brings claims of invasion of privacy, sexual assault and battery, and false imprisonment stemming from being groped by male physician employed by Defendant to conduct physicals. No mention is made of pseudonymity.

      • Kimberly v. State, No. 23954, 2005 Haw. LEXIS 392 (Haw. 2005) (aff’d by 116 P.3d 7) – Plaintiff originally brought action under Doe pseudonym, but it was recaptioned to reflect true name. Id. at *1, n.1. Claim for sexual harassment, including federal and state constitutional privacy violations. Kimberly/Doe is transgendered former inmate allegedly harassed and subject to retaliation by guards.

      Another case, Estate of Doe v. Paul Revere Ins. Group, 948 P.2d 1103 (Haw. 1997), involves a claim against a private insurance company for breach of contract for failure to make payments on health and disability insurance where insured was perhaps HIV infected. The court did not address the Doe pseudonym. See also Smith v. Cutter Biological, Inc., a Div. of Miles Inc., 823 P.2d 717 (Haw. 1991) (Pseudonymous plaintiffs with hemophilia sue for HIV infection from Defendant’s medical blood products).

      Most reported cases with Doe plaintiffs, however, stem from family court proceedings such as custody disputes (Doe v. Doe, 120 P.3d 277 (Haw. Ct. App. 2005); Doe v. Doe, 122 P.3d 299 (Hawai‘i Ct. App. 2005); Doe v. Doe, 100 P.3d 606 (Haw. 2004)); divorces (Doe v. Doe, 192 P.3d 612 (Haw. Ct. App. 2008); Doe v. Doe, 106 P.3d 374 (Haw. 2004); Doe v. Doe, 52 P.3d 255 (Haw. 2002); Doe v. Doe, 54 P.3d 946 (Haw. Ct. App. 2002)); paternity (Doe v. Doe, 52 P.3d 255 (Haw. 2002)); and child support claims (Doe v. Doe, 83 P.3d 771 (Haw. Ct. App. 2004); Doe v. Doe, 34 P.3d 1059 (Haw. Ct. App. 2001)). Other Doe plaintiffs are also sexual assault victims bringing civil suits under negligence theories (Doe v. Grosvenor Center Associates, 92 P.3d 1010 (Haw. Ct. App., 2004)).

    2. Filing Requirements & Availability of Court Records

      HAW. R. CIV. P. 10. Form of Pleadings.

      (a) Caption; names of parties. Every pleading shall contain a caption setting forth the name of the court, the title of the action, the file number, and a designation as in Rule 7(a). In the complaint the title of the action shall include the names of all the parties, but in other pleadings it is sufficient to state the name of the first party on each side with an appropriate indication of other parties.

      Hawaiian cases are available through CourtConnect (last visited Apr. 20, 2010), and are searchable by party name or case type.

    3. Relevant Statutes

      HAW. REV. STAT. § 325-101 Confidentiality of Records and Information

      [Provides for confidentiality of records relating to AIDS and HIV.]

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