Tort Law

Assumption Of Obedience Cases

This page within Virginia Tort Case Law is a compilation of cases reported by the Virginia Supreme Court and summarized by Brien Roche dealing with the topic of Assumption Of Obedience to the law and the related topic of personal injury.  

1989 West v. Critzer, 238 Va. 356, 383 S.E.2d 726.

No one is entitled to rely on assumption that is contrary to obvious fact. In this case, defendant saw vehicle moving slowly into its path. Vehicle never stopped. Defendant had no right to assume vehicle would stop.

1987 Litchford v. Hancock, 232 Va. 496, 352 S.E.2d 335.

The right to assume doctrine has no application once plaintiff realizes, or in exercise of ordinary care should have realized, that defendant is not using reasonable care.

1981 Mackey v. Miller, 221 Va. 715, 273 S.E.2d 550.

Airline pilot has right to assume other pilot will obey air traffic regulations until he realizes or should have realized that other pilot is not doing so.

1971 Southern v. Price, 221 Va. 469, 178 S.E.2d 685.

Driver’s right to assume that right of way will be yielded to him depends upon evidence, and he cannot rely on assumption that is contrary to obvious fact.

1969 Hagan v. Hicks, 209 Va. 499, 165 S.E.2d 421.

Plaintiff had right to assume that no obstructions or unlighted objects would be parked on highway in front of him.

1960 Ragsdale v. Jones, 202 Va. 278, 117 S.E.2d 114.

Person has right to assume that others will discharge those duties incumbent upon them.

1958 Gammon v. Hyde, 199 Va. 918, 103 S.E.2d 221.

Defendant had stop sign. Co-defendant was on main road. Co-defendant’s right to assume that defendant would yield was dependent on proximity of co-defendant’s car to intersection.

1958 Mawyer v. Thomas, 199 Va. 897, 103 S.E.2d 217.

Intersection accident where traffic light was on flashing red and yellow. Right to assume that party facing flashing red would stop, was conditional.

1957 Davis v. Scarborough, 199 Va. 100, 97 S.E.2d 731.

Driver has right to assume his lane free of obstruction but this does not relieve him of duty to maintain reasonable lookout.

1957 Clark v. Kimnach, 198 Va. 737, 96 S.E.2d 780.

Where reasonable time does not remain for vehicle to return to its proper lane when other driver first sees it, then that other driver is not entitled to presumption that vehicle would return to its lane.

1954 Montgomery Ward & Co. v. Young, 195 Va. 671, 79 S.E.2d 858.

Plaintiff stepped on lawn mower handle in defendant’s aisle, which flew up and hit him. As invitee, plaintiff in absence of warning had right to assume premises in reasonably safe condition.

1952 Messick v. Barham, 194 Va. 382, 73 S.E.2d 530.

Plaintiff had right to assume that defendant would obey law and perform his duty and to act on that belief until contrary appeared.

1952 Hardiman v. Dyson, 194 Va. 116, 72 S.E.2d 361.

Motorist has right to assume that others on highway will obey law and perform their duties.

1950 Bryan v. Fewell, 191 Va. 647, 62 S.E.2d 39.

Motor vehicle struck pedestrian who had stopped and looked directly towards his vehicle. Defendant had right to assume that plaintiff would not attempt to cross street immediately in front of his automobile.

1950 Sink v. Masterson, 191 Va. 618, 61 S.E.2d 863.

Plaintiff’s car struck by defendant’s truck as plaintiff was making left turn across highway in front of defendant’s vehicle. While plaintiff had right to assume that driver of truck would observe traffic laws, that did not relieve him of duty to comply with requirement that before making such turn, driver should exercise ordinary care to see that such movement can be made in safety and to give appropriate signal.

1949 Rhoades v. Meadows, 189 Va. 558, 54 S.E.2d 123.

Plaintiff struck on side of road after crossing. If defendant had been driving at lawful rate, as plaintiff had right to suppose, plaintiff would have had sufficient time to cross.

1949 Crist v. Fitzgerald, 189 Va. 109, 52 S.E.2d 145.

Driver of car traveling in his or her proper lane has right to assume that no vehicle or obstruction would be parked on highway in front of him or her.

1948 Moore v. Virginia Transit Co., 188 Va. 493, 50 S.E.2d 268.

Traveling public is entitled to assume highway free of defects or obstructions.

1948 Virginia Transit Co. v. James, 188 Va. 135, 49 S.E.2d 285.

Pedestrian has right to assume that motorman of street car will operate car with ordinary care.

1948 Marks v. Ore, 187 Va. 146, 45 S.E.2d 894.

Plaintiff had right to assume that roadway ahead was free of obstructions.

1948 Millard v. Cohen, 187 Va. 44, 46 S.E.2d 2.

Driver has right to assume that road ahead is clear.

1947 Jenkins v. Johnson, 186 Va. 191, 42 S.E.2d 319.

Motorist has right to assume that pedestrian will exercise ordinary care for his safety.

1946 Harris Motor Lines v. Green, 184 Va. 984, 37 S.E.2d 4.

Motorist has right to assume that roadway ahead is clear.

1946 VEPCO v. Holland, 184 Va. 893, 37 S.E.2d 40.

Motorist entitled to believe that street car would stop for red light.

1943 Willard Stores, Inc. v. Cornell, 181 Va. 143, 23 S.E.2d 761.

Defendant saw plaintiff crossing street and in position of relative safety. Defendant had right to assume that plaintiff would continue crossing and not turn around and cross in front of defendant.

Contact Us For A Free Consultation

Assumption Of Obedience Cases

Contact Us For A Free Consultation

Contact Us For A Free Consultation