Can you sue yourself?

In Utah, you apparently can.  As the 2015 opinion summarizes: “Barbara Bagley, acting in different capacities, appears as both the appellants and the appellee in this case. Bagley represents the estate of Bradley M. Vom Baur. She also appears on her own behalf as Vom Baur’s heir. We refer to these two roles collectively as Plaintiffs. Bagley is also the defendant and alleged tortfeasor (Defendant).”

Did you get that?  Here’s another quote to clear things up a bit, “Bagley  finds herself on both sides of this dispute because not only is she her husband’s heir and the personal representative of his estate, she is also the defendant driver whose negligence allegedly caused the accident.”

Let me help — Ms. Bagley was apparently the negligent driver that caused her husband’s death.  She then filed a wrongful death action against herself as her husband’s heir.

The lower determined that the language of the wrongful death and survival action statutes prevents a tortfeasor from seeking recovery from herself and that the plaintiffs therefore could not bring suit against the defendant.   On appeal however, Utah Court of Appeals found “that the plain language of the statutes does not bar such suits” and sent it back for trial.

I wonder which table Ms Bagley sat at the trial!

Read the full opinion.

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