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Landmark Case

Case Name: Margery M. DILLON,
et al v. David Luther LEGG

Date, Location, Cite: 1968 CA
68 Calif 2d 728
CA Supreme Court

Legg killed 2 year old daughter of Dillon with car. She saw and sued for wrongful death, but also for pain & suffering for herself. The trial court said mom was outside "Zone of Danger", CA Supreme Court reversed, said Zone of Danger doesn't cover tort case. Causation & foreseeability apply -this is a breech of duty- driver has a duty to pedestrians & those with them. This became a new cause of action. The Court said emotional trauma was limited to:

  1. close relative who
  2. actually saw injury

prior cases had ruled that plaintiff must be in physical danger.
cf Thing v. LaChusa