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Victor v. Sperry
California Court of Appeal
162 Cal. App. 2d 518, 329 P.2d 728 (1958)
Rudolph Victor (plaintiff) was injured in an automobile accident in Mexico while riding as a passenger. Victor brought a tort action in a California state court to recover damages from the driver and the owner of the car he was riding in, John C. and John M. Sperry (defendants), as well as the driver of the other car, Edward Thornton (defendant). All parties were California residents and citizens. Mexican law limited the amount of damages recoverable for personal injuries, and it also imposed liability without fault upon the owner and driver of an automobile that causes injury to another. The trial court concluded that both drivers were negligent and that because the accident occurred in Mexico, Victor’s cause of action arose there and thus Mexico law governed the character and measure of Victor’s damages. However, the trial court refused to apply the Mexican law imposing liability without fault against John M. Sperry—the owner of the automobile in which Victor was riding—because it was contrary to California public policy. Victor appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Mussell, J.)
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