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Hegyes v. Unjian Enterprises, Inc.

California Court of Appeals
286 Cal. Rptr. 85 (1992)


Facts

Lynn Hegyes was driving her vehicle when it was struck by a car owned by Unjian Enterprises, Inc. (Unjian) (defendant) and driven by one of the company’s employees. Hegyes sustained injuries, which ultimately required that she be fitted with a lumbo-peritoneal shunt to divert spinal fluid for treatment. Two years later, Hegyes became pregnant. As the fetus grew, it compressed the shunt, causing injuries to Hegyes. To avoid further injury to Lynn and her unborn child, the baby, Cassondra Hegyes (plaintiff), was delivered 51 days premature. Thereafter, Cassondra filed suit against Unjian alleging that the personal injuries she sustained were proximately caused by the defendants’ conduct. Unjian filed a motion to dismiss the complaint, arguing that it owed no legal duty of care to Cassondra due to the lack of a special relationship. The trial court agreed and dismissed Cassondra’s complaint without leave to amend, on the ground that recognition of such a cause of action would be an unwarranted extension of a duty of care. Cassondra appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Woods, J.)

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  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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