U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Exclusive Remedy — New York Vehicle & Traffic Law
Hallock v. Koubek
Judges Lohier, Carney and Rakoff
Background: The defendant appealed from the denial of his motion for summary judgment allowing the plaintiffs contribution claims against him in a tort suit arising out of a car accident.
Ruling: The Second Circuit reversed. Upon certifying a question to the New York Court of Appeals, the held that a party in the plaintiffs’ position may not pursue a third-party contribution claim under section 388 of the New York Vehicle and Traffic Law against an owner of a vehicle where the vehicle driver’s negligence was a cause of the plaintiff’s injuries, but the driver is insulated from lawsuit by the exclusive remedy provisions of New York’s Workers’ Compensation Law § 29 (6).
Arthur J. Siegel of Bond, Schoeneck & King for the third-party defendant-appellant; Glenn A. Kaminska of Ahmuty, Demers & McManus for the plaitniffs-appellees