The Case Brief: Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Co

The Case Brief: Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Co 248 NY 339 (Court of Appeals of New York, 1928)

Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad Co, the case was considered in 1928. It is a classic example of an American offense on the issue of liability to an unforeseeable plaintiff and is being studied by students to this day. The Palsgraf v Long Island was examined by the New York Court of Appeals and the highest state court in New York. The verdict of this case was written by Chief Justice Benjamin Cardoso. It is Benjamin Cardoso who is the leading figure in the development of American common law, and after the justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Palsgraf case brief: During the New York Court of Appeal's judgment Palsgraf v Long Island Railroad of 1928, the state case law followed the classic formalities for negligence: the plaintiff had to prove that the Long Island Railway had the responsibility to the customers and had to take care since she received a loss of health precisely through the violation of this duty. However, according to the New York precedent, the railway had the usual duty to exercise maximum care to its customers during transportation. However, this responsibility did not extend to the station or platform.

Palsgraf v Long Island Railroad Case Brief

On Sunday, August 24, 1924 in Brooklyn, was a very warm summer day. Forty-year-old Helen Palsgraf (plaintiff), who worked as a janitor and housekeeper, went to Rockaway Beach with her two daughters: fifteen-year-old Elizabeth and twelve-year-old Lillian. They stood on a platform that belonged to Long Island RR. (railway) (defendant) after buying a ticket to go to Rockaway Beach. Palsgraf and her daughters were waiting for their train. Meanwhile, a train stopped on the platform which was moving in a different direction. The train started to move but slowed down. At that moment, the two men started running hurry to get on the train that was moving. One of these men had a packet containing fireworks.

No one on the platform knew about this, because his package looked small, about fifteen inches long, and he was covered with a newspaper. The first man managed to easily jump on the train, but the second man had problems. He was assisted by two train employees, pulling and pushing him. At that moment, the man dropped his packet. The package with fireworks fell on the rail tracks and exploded. As a consequence, several weights were formed on the other end of the platform, which damaged Helen Palsgraf. The injury of the plaintiff and other victims did not have a need for emergency hospitalization. The injured Palsgraf sued the railroad for their negligence. In the course of this, the court of first instance ruled for the plaintiff, and the appellate division was confirmed.

So, in May 1927, the victim received a verdict from the jury for compensation for damages of $ 6,000 from the accused party. The railroad turned to this verdict. Soon, the railway decided in the court of appeals that there was no negligence towards the victim on their part. The court decided that there was no negligence on the part of the railway concerning its injured party. there was no negligence at all. In this situation, nothing threatened a threat in the falling package, for persons who stood at a distance. It is not negligent that acts negligently if it is not connected with intrusion into a legitimate protected interest, a violation of the law. Since the railroad staff did not have the duty to help Palsgraf, since the injury received had no predictable harm from the fact that they assisted the man with the package. In this regard, the original verdict of the jury was abolished, and the railway won the case.