Rix v. Gen. Motors Corp.

222 Mont. 318, 723 P.2d 195 (1986)

 

RULE:

A party has a right to jury instructions adaptable to his theory of the case when the theory is supported by credible evidence. It is reversible error to refuse to instruct on an important part of a party's theory of the case.

FACTS:

Plaintiff filed several claims in a strict liability action agains the defendant. The jury verdict, however, was in favor of defendant on a strict liability theory. The plaintiff appealed the judgment.

ISSUE:

Did the court properly instruct the jury on strict liability?

ANSWER:

No

CONCLUSION:

On appeal, the court reversed and remanded for a new trial because the trial court failed to properly instruct the jury on strict liability under design defect theory. The proper instructions should have focused on plaintiff proving the product was unreasonably dangerous, caused plaintiff's injuries, and was placed in the stream of commerce by defendant.

Click here to view the full text case and earn your Daily Research Points.