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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Weird news: Widow wants to sue herself for accident that killed husband

When something as weird as this happens, it is necessary to try and figure out why a person would want to file a case against herself. One can think of this as something emotional, since this lady wants to file a case to force a trial for negligence; after all, it was a road accident where her husband was thrown from the vehicle and died of his injuries, and it would be simple to think that she wants compensation as well as some kind of action for this negligence. But where it gets weird is that she herself was the driver. She has been trying to file this case for some time, and it got rejected in a court, but then she got permission for this case from the Utah Court of Appeals.
One possible reasoning for this case is that it will provide a path for some kind of financial settlement - as mentioned in the article, it could be because this action will provide a way for a jury to decide on a financial settlement for this negligence, against herself, which in turn will be provided by her insurance companies. Obviously, a lot of people anyhow suspect such kind of motives behind the case, and there are efforts to prevent this kind of case from proceeding, but how successful such efforts will be, will need to wait and see. (link to article):

Bagley's attorneys say she is advancing this lawsuit for the benefit of her husband's estate because creditors will have to be paid before the widow can receive any money as her husband's only heir. But other lawyers are looking to once again dismiss the suit, saying if it is allowed to continue, a jury would then be called upon to figure out if Bagley's negligence caused her own trauma. "The jury would be asked to determine how much money will fairly compensate Barbara Bagley for the harm she caused herself," attorneys Peter Christensen and Kathryn Tunacik were quoted as saying. "The jury will be highly confused -- it cannot order a person to compensate herself," they said. John Holcomb, professor in the Department of Business Ethics and Legal Studies at the University of Denver's Daniels College of Business, said the lawsuit is "quirky and also clever."
If this case does proceed and come to some kind of financial award, it could act as a precedent, and not a very nice precedent.

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