Sunday, February 3, 2013

Miller v. Eichhorn case brief

Miller v. Eichhorn case summary
426 N.W.2d 641 (Iowa Ct. App. 1988)

PROCEDURAL HISTORY: Plaintiff sought review of an order by the Iowa District Court for Johnson County (Iowa) in favor of defendant in plaintiff's action for damages resulting from an automobile accident.

FACTS: Plaintiff appealed the damage award for injuries resulting from an automobile accident with defendant. Plaintiff claimed that the damage award was inadequate and that there were errors in the instructions. The collision occurred when defendant backed his car from his driveway into the street. Plaintiff claimed that the verdict was inadequate because her medical expenses nearly totaled the verdict and her medical evidence was uncontroverted. The court stated that the jury had the right to reject later opinions and expenses associated with later doctors' treatments of plaintiff. Therefore, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to grant a new trial on the damage issue. Plaintiff also challenged the trial court's submission of an instruction on mitigation of damages. Plaintiff objected to the mitigation of damage instruction claiming the failure to mitigate damages was not fault. The court found that the question submitted to the jury was whether plaintiff reacted as a reasonable person considering defendant's action as one of the circumstances. The court found that the jury instructions were not erroneous and affirmed the decision of the trial court.

-In determining the percentages of fault, a trier of fact shall consider both the nature of the conduct of each party and the extent of the causal relation between the conduct and the damages claimed.

CONCLUSION: The court affirmed the judgment of the trial court.

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