had drinks at Huls' bar.McCormick
left, drove drunk, ran into Kopmann's truck and died.McCormick's wife sued both
Kopmann and Huls.
the complaint, McCormick's wife alleged that the Kopmann's driving negligently caused
the accident.In another
count, McCormick's wife alleged that Huls' serving of alcohol to McCormick caused McCormick
to drive in a way that caused the accident.
claims were mutually exclusive.To find Kopmann guilty you'd have to believe that McCormick was
driving safely, but to find Huls guilty you have to believe that McCormick
was driving drunk (contributory negligence).
and Huls both filed motions to dismiss because complaint contained contradictory
filed a demurrer, aka FederalRule 12(b)(6).
Court denied the motion and proceeded with trial.
Court found Kopmann at fault for the accident, and Huls not at fault.
the trial, Kopmann appealed on the basis that the case should have been
dismissed based on his original motion.
Court found that a complaint can contain contradictory legal positions.
general, a complaint with contradictory or inconsistent legal positions
a plaintiff won't be able to recover from both claims, but they should be
allowed to move forward present to the jury the evidence.
doesn't need to guess at which of two alternate theories might prevail at
trial, they can pursue both.Pleading to one is not to be treated as judicial admission on the