Holding: The Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance Act (FEGLIA), which establishes a life insurance program for federal employees, allows an employee to designate a beneficiary to receive the proceeds of the policy when the employee dies. That law preempts a Virginia law that allows the family of a deceased employee to sue the designated beneficiary for the proceeds if the beneficiary happens to be the employee’s former spouse.
Judgment: Affirmed, 9-0, in an opinion by Justice Sotomayor on June 3, 2013. Justice Scalia joins the opinion except as to footnote 4. Justice Thomas and Justice Alito filed opinions concurring in the judgment.