Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Minton v. Cavaney case brief

Minton v. Cavaney case brief summary
364 P.2d 473 (1961)

CASE SYNOPSIS
Defendant, the estate of a former director of a defunct corporation, appealed from a judgment of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County (California), which held that the decedent was personally liable for a judgment that was entered against the corporation in a prior wrongful death action.

CASE FACTS
Defendant, the estate of a former director of a defunct corporation, appealed from a trial court judgment holding it personally liable for a wrongful death award against the corporation in a prior litigation. Defendant argued that decedent, an attorney, merely accepted director status to accommodate the defunct corporation, and the evidence did not support the determination that the "alter ego" doctrine was applicable.

DISCUSSION

  • The court disagreed, holding that the trial court was not required to believe the statement that decedent was only a "temporary" director and officer "for accommodation." 
  • However, the court reversed the judgment on the grounds that decedent was not a party to the wrongful death action against the corporation, and the judgment in that action was therefore not binding upon him.

CONCLUSION
The court reversed the trial court's judgment on the grounds that decedent was not a party to the wrongful death action against the corporation, and the judgment in that action was therefore not binding upon him.

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