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Conflict of Laws Keyed to Brilmayer
O’Leary v. Illinois Terminal Railroad
Citation:209 S.W.2d 873 (Mo. 1957)
The Plaintiff, Margaret O’Leary, sustained personal injuries when an electric railway train operated by the Defendant, Illinois Terminal Railroad (the Railroad), struck the automobile she was driving. The collision occurred in Granite City, Illinois, and Margaret was domiciled in Missouri.
Margaret brought a negligence suit against the Railroad in St. Louis, Missouri. The Railroad raised an affirmative defense of contributory negligence. Margaret argued that court should apply Missouri’s contributory negligence laws, which required that the Railroad prove that Margaret was contributorily negligence in causing the collision.
The circuit court applied Missouri law and found for Margaret, awarding her a sum of $7,000.00. The Railroad appealed to the St. Louis Court of Appeals, arguing that the court should have applied Illinois law, which required that Margaret prove that she acted with ordinary care. The appellate court affirmed the trial court’s decision but, on its own motion, transferred the case to the Supreme Court of Missouri for review.
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