Palsgraf v long island railroad company. COURT OF APPEALS OF NEW YORK 2022-12-11

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Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Company is a landmark case in the field of torts, or civil wrongs. It was decided by the New York Court of Appeals in 1928 and has since been cited as precedent in numerous cases involving issues of liability and negligence.

The case arose from an incident that occurred at the Long Island Railroad Company's station in Rockaway Beach, New York. On August 24, 1924, a man named Helms was attempting to board a moving train when he stumbled and dropped a package of fireworks he was carrying. The fireworks exploded, causing a commotion on the platform and knocking over a set of scales. One of the scales hit Mrs. Palsgraf, a bystander who was standing on the other side of the platform, causing her to fall and sustain injuries. Mrs. Palsgraf sued the Long Island Railroad Company, alleging that the company was negligent in failing to prevent the explosion and resulting injuries.

The case was ultimately decided in favor of the Long Island Railroad Company. The court held that the company was not liable for Mrs. Palsgraf's injuries because it did not owe her a duty of care. In other words, the court found that the company had no legal obligation to protect Mrs. Palsgraf from the risks of being at a train station, including the risk of being hit by falling objects.

The Palsgraf case is often discussed in legal circles due to the concept of "proximate cause," which is an essential element of negligence. Proximate cause refers to the relationship between the defendant's actions (or lack of action) and the plaintiff's injuries. In this case, the court found that the Long Island Railroad Company's actions (or lack of action) were not the proximate cause of Mrs. Palsgraf's injuries. Instead, the proximate cause was Helms' actions in dropping the package of fireworks, which set off the chain of events that ultimately led to Mrs. Palsgraf's injuries.

The Palsgraf case has had a lasting impact on the law of torts and has been cited in numerous cases involving issues of liability and negligence. It serves as a reminder that in order to hold someone liable for another person's injuries, there must be a legal duty of care and a direct causal relationship between the defendant's actions and the plaintiff's injuries.

Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad: Scope of Liability

palsgraf v long island railroad company

If not, is the result to be any different, so far as the distant passenger is concerned, when the guard stumbles over a valise which a truckman or a porter has left upon the walk? An analogy is of little aid. Matter of Polemis, L. In fact it contained fireworks, but there was nothing in its appearance to give notice of its contents. It was never prevented on the theory that no duty was owing to them. In this respect, it was held that a claimant must, in order to bring a claim in negligence, demonstrate that there has been some violation of her personal rights. How great only omniscience can say.

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Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Co.

palsgraf v long island railroad company

One who seeks redress at law does not make out a cause of action by showing without more that there has been damage to his person. It is a wrong not only to those who happen to be within the radius of danger but to all who might have been thereā€” a wrong to the public at large. The scales struck the plaintiff, causing injuries for which she sues. Intent again is material in tort actions, where punitive damages are sought, dependent on actual maliceā€” not on merely reckless conduct. The best defences for the negligence claim against you are two: Number one, you owe no duty of care to the plaintiff.


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Palsgraf v Long Island Railroad

palsgraf v long island railroad company

It does not matter that they are unusual, unexpected, unforeseen and unforseeable. In brief the plaintiff was suing the company for the wrongs caused to the package owner since she did not suffer any wrong. The law is full of ambiguous terms, and "negligence" is a prime example. How far cannot be told from the recordā€”apparently twenty-five or thirty feet. For damage to the person, the sole remedy was trespass, and trespass did not lie in the absence of aggression, and that direct and personal Holdsworth, op.

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Helen Palsgraf, Respondent, V. the Long Island Railroad Company Case Brief Analysis Essay Example

palsgraf v long island railroad company

Life will have to be made over, and human nature transformed, before prevision so extravagant can be accepted as the norm of conduct, the customary standard to which behaviour must conform. B, sitting in a window of a building opposite, is cut by flying glass. But injury in some form was most probable. It defines a limitation of negligence with respect to scope of liability. There are some hints that may help us.

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Palsgraf v. Long Island R.R. Co. :: 1928 :: New York Court of Appeals Decisions :: New York Case Law :: New York Law :: US Law :: Justia

palsgraf v long island railroad company

Except for the explosion, she would not have been injured. Relative to her it was not negligence at all. The plaintiff's rights must be injured, and this injury must be caused by the negligence. We have in a somewhat different connection spoken of "the stream of events. The true theory is, it seems to me, that the injury to C, if in truth he is to be denied recovery, and the injury to the baby is that their several injuries were not the proximate result of the negligence. Liability can be no greater where the act is inadvertent. But here neither insanity nor infancy lessens responsibility.


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Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Co.

palsgraf v long island railroad company

We rightly say the fire started by the lantern caused its destruction. The purpose of the act, as well as its effect, was to make his person safe. The river, reaching the ocean, comes from a hundred sources. It's important to note here that in New York, unlike other states, the Court of Appeals is the highest state court. As was said by Mr.

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Palsgraf v Long Island Railroad Co.

palsgraf v long island railroad company

But bodily security is protected, not against all forms of interference or aggression, but only against some. You can show that you did not owe a duty of care to the plaintiff. Both the trial court and the intermediate appellate court awarded judgment to the plaintiff, Palsgraf. Does the law of proximate cause apply in these circumstances to determine that the defendant is liable for negligence? No request was made to submit the matter to the jury as a question of fact, even would that have been proper upon the record before us. Meanwhile, plaintiff's attorneys still focus on proximate cause in situations where their clients were injured in a somewhat surprising way. We said the act of the railroad was not the proximate cause of our neighbor's fire.

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Palsgraf v. Long Island R.R. Co.

palsgraf v long island railroad company

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Please do not include any confidential or sensitive information in a contact form, text message, or voicemail. It is a wrong not only to those who happen to be within the radius of danger but to all who might have been thereā€” a wrong to the public at large. We are not liable if all this happened because of some reason other than the insecure foundation. May have some bearing, for the problem of proximate cause is not to be solved by any one consideration. One who jostles one's neighbour in a crowd does not invade the rights of others standing at the outer fringe when the unintended contact casts a bomb upon the ground. Negligence that does no one harm is not a tort. In the process, a package containing fireworks fell and the contents exploded.

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