PSI Energy v. Roberts: Analysis of the Mesothelioma Case Part 1
Read the analysis of the case in the Opinion in PSI Energy v. Roberts. Roberts, an insulator by trade, was exposed to asbestos in his workplace, and was ultimately diagnosed with mesothelioma.
Our supreme court has held that although the language differs in these two rules, “both rules mandate that the motion be granted when there is insufficient evidence under the law to support a verdict.” Huff v. Travelers Indem. Co., 266 Ind. 414, 421, 363 N.E.2d 985, 990 (1977).
When the trial court is considering a motion for judgment on the evidence subsequent to the jury’s verdict, it must view only the evidence favorable to the nonmoving party and the reasonable inferences to be drawn from that evidence. Id.
The trial court may enter judgment “only if there is no substantial evidence or reasonable inference to be adduced therefrom to support an essential element of the claim, i.e., the evidence must point unerringly to a conclusion not reached by the jury.” Id.
“This is the same standard which applies to a motion for judgment made at the conclusion of the evidence, i.e., there must be a complete failure of proof.” Id.
If there is relevant evidence which supports the verdict, then the motion may not properly be granted because evidence which supports the verdict is sufficient evidence, and the final determination is left to the fact finder.
This is not the scintilla rule. A scintilla is by definition barely perceptible and would not support a reasonable inference.
Judicial economy is served by this view in that the trial court withdraws the case from the jury or enters a judgment notwithstanding the verdict whenever an appellate court would be compelled to find the evidence does not support a judgment.
The trial court may not weigh the evidence when considering whether to enter judgment contrary to the verdict. Id. at 421-422, 363 N.E.2d at 990-991 (internal citations omitted).
As our supreme court recently noted, if there is evidence that would allow reasonable people to differ as to the result, judgment on the evidence is improper. Smith v. Baxter, 796 N.E.2d 242, 243 (Ind. 2003).
Courtesy of the Indiana Court of Appeals and the State of Indiana
Other helpful links:
Asbestos and lung cancer Asbestos and lung cancer
Mesothelioma attorney Mesothelioma attorney
Mesothelioma Lawyer Mesothelioma lawyer
Asbestos attorney Asbestos attorney