Friday, March 23, 2012

Gorton v. Doty case brief

Gorton v. Doty case brief summary
69 P.2d 136 (1937)

Plaintiffs, father and son, brought suit against defendant owner for injuries sustained in an automobile accident. The District Court of the Fifth Judicial District, Caribou County (Idaho) entered judgments in favor of the father and the son. The trial court denied the owner's motions for new trial. The owner appealed.

The son was injured in a car accident while being transported to a school football game. The son's coach was the driver of the owner's car. The son and father's theory of recovery against the owner was based upon the alleged negligence of the coach, acting as the special agent of the owner. The owner argued that no agency relationship existed, because she loaned her car to the coach.


  • However, the court determined that the evidence supported the finding that the relationship of principal and agent existed between the coach and the owner. 
  • The court found that the trial court did not err in denying the owner's motion for mistrial and concluded that the trial court properly instructed the jury. 
  • The court concluded that no substantial error occurred in the trial court.


The court affirmed the trial court's judgment in favor of the son and the father in their negligence action against the owner. The court denied the owner's petition for rehearing.

Is the other an agent of the car’s owner?

Court imposed a structure of relationship regardless of the agreement between the

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