The Appellate Group

Rodriguez v. Crosby

Rodriguez v. Crosby, 2024 UT App 7 (Luthy, J.)

Civil Procedure / Statutory Interpretation

Plaintiff sued for Daughter’s general/noneconomic damages arising from a car accident. The driver moved for summary judgment asserting Daughter’s injury did not meet the statutory threshold for bringing such a suit. The district court granted the motion, dismissing plaintiff’s claim with prejudice. Plaintiff appealed.  The Utah Court of Appeals affirmed, holding:

  • The district court did not abuse its discretion in applying the version of the statute in effect at the time of the accident. 
  • Practice tip: The only exception to the bar on retroactive statutory application occurs when the newly codified law is “expressly declared to be retroactive.”
  • Practice tip: While plaintiffs have until trial to show that they sustained a threshold injury, the substantive question of what qualifies as a threshold injury is determined as of the time of the accident, when the cause of action accrued.

Read the full court opinion