SW Legal Educational Publishing

Arizona Courts Have Interest in Accident That Occurred in Tennessee
Description Suit by California resident in Arizona court against Arizona resident for injuries suffered in car accident in Tennessee allowed to proceed. The Tennessee residents involved in the accident were not parties to the litigation, so Arizona courts could hear the matter.
Topic Court Procedure
Key Words Choice of Laws, Statute of Limitations
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Hamblin, a California resident, was injured in a car accident in Tennessee. He was a passenger in a car driven by an Arizona resident; the other car was driven by a Tennessee resident. Hamblin filed suit against the drivers in Arizona court more than a year after the accident, which was after the Tennessee statute of limitations expired but before Arizona's did. The question before the Arizona high court was if the Arizona statute of limitations would apply.
Decision Defendants claim the locus of the accident determines which statute of limitation applied. However, the Tennessee driver is not subject to personal jurisdiction of Arizona courts and did not reply to the action filed. Hence, the relevant parties are the Arizona driver/defendant and the California passenger/plaintiff. Arizona has a significant interest in the matter because its policy requires citizens to answer for the harm they cause. "Arizona courts have long recognized that, in addition to making injured plaintiffs whole, holding tortfeasors accountable also advanced the important interest in deterring wrongful conduct."
Citation DeLoach v. Alfred, ---P2d--- (1998 WL 297504, Sup. Ct., Az.)
960 P. 2d 628 (Sup. Ct., Az., 1998)

Back to Court Procedure Listings

©1997-2000  South-Western, a division of Cengage Learning, Inc. Cengage Learning is a trademark used herein under license.