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Malloy v. Trombley

New York Court of Appeals
50 N.Y.2d 46 (1990)


Thomas E. Malloy (plaintiff), Douglas A. Trombley (defendant), and state trooper Britt were involved in an automobile accident in New York. Malloy and Trombley sued each other in New York state courts for negligence, and they each also separately sued the State of New York in the court of claims for trooper Britt’s alleged negligence. The court of claims actions were tried together. The court found for the state on both claims, finding that both claimants had failed to prove that the state was negligent and that Malloy and Trombley were each contributorily negligent, which would also bar recovery for either of them against the state. That decision was not appealed. Thereafter, Trombley moved for summary judgment, based on issue preclusion, in Malloy’s negligence action against him and cited the court of claims decision’s finding that Malloy was contributorily negligent in causing the accident. The trial court denied the motion, but the appellate court reversed and dismissed the claim. Malloy appealed and cited the Restatement (Second) of Judgments § 27, with comments, view that would not consider such an alternative finding essential to the prior judgment and would not give it a preclusive effect in this case.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Jones, J.)

Dissent (Meyer, J.)

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