Rittmiller v. School Dist. No. 84, Civ. A. No. 646.

Decision Date16 February 1952
Docket NumberCiv. A. No. 646.
Citation104 F. Supp. 187
CourtU.S. District Court — District of Minnesota

Henry N. Somsen, Jr., of Somsen & Somsen, New Ulm, Minn., for defendant School District for the motion.

Harry Lashkowitz, of Lashkowitz & Lashkowitz, Fargo, N. D., for plaintiff, opposed.

NORDBYE, Chief Judge.

This cause comes before the Court on motion of defendant School District for summary judgment in its favor.

The action involves a claim for damages growing out of a collision between a school bus owned by the above-named School District and driven by defendant Hammerschmidt and a car driven by plaintiff. The accident occurred on March 7, 1951. The School District is a municipal corporation, and in its answer it raises the defense of immunity from any tort liability because at the time of the accident it was engaged in a governmental function. It is not denied by the showing herein that in the operation of its bus at the time of the accident the School District was engaged in the transportation of students from its school to their homes. This, of course, is a governmental function. Allen v. Independent School District No. 17, 173 Minn. 5, 216 N. W. 533. That a municipal corporation is immune from liability for negligence when engaged in the exercise of a governmental function is settled in this State. Bank v. Brainerd School District, 49 Minn. 106, 51 N.W. 814; Mokovich v. Independent School District No. 22, 177 Minn. 446, 225 N.W. 292; Bang v. Independent School District, 177 Minn. 454, 225 N.W. 449.

But plaintiff contends that the record here reflects that this School District carried liability insurance, and it points out that the answer to an interrogatory submitted by plaintiff as to whether the School District carried liability insurance involving the operation of the school bus was as follows:

"The defendant School District No. 84 carried liability insurance with Underwriters at Lloyds of Minneapolis insuring it and its employes and agents against liability for personal injury and property damage for the operation of said school bus. The limit of liability for personal injury provided in its insurance policy is $20,000.00 for injury to any one person and $200,000.00 for injuries to persons in any one accident. The limit of liability provided in its policy for property damage liability is $5,000.00 for any one accident."

Plaintiff's position in opposition to the motion for summary judgment is not entirely clear. But apparently it is intended that the procuring of insurance by the School District constituted a waiver of its immunity and that the School District should be retained as a party defendant herein until the question of negligence and damages is determined by the jury so that appropriate action may be taken against the insurer if plaintiff is successful in his litigation. However, the carrying of insurance by a School District and the payment of premiums on such insurance policy do not impose any liability upon the municipality. This is made clear from the very statute which authorizes the payment of insurance premiums. Apparently this policy was obtained in pursuance of Section...

To continue reading

Request your trial
8 cases
  • Collins v. Memorial Hospital of Sheridan County
    • United States
    • Wyoming Supreme Court
    • May 15, 1974
    ...v. City of Milwaukee, 17 Wis.2d 26, 115 N.W.2d 618, 625, in a most scholarly opinion. The standing of Rittmiller v. School Dist. No. 84 (Wabasso, Minn.), D.C.Minn., 104 F.Supp. 187, is not enhanced by the fact that the result should be completely different today because Minnesota has direct......
  • Maffei v. Incorporated Town of Kemmerer
    • United States
    • Wyoming Supreme Court
    • April 21, 1959
    ...City, 124 Ind.App. 30, 112 N.E.2d 891; Wallace v. Laurel County Board of Education, 287 Ky. 454, 153 S.W.2d 915; Rittmiller v. School Dist. No. 84, D.C.Minn., 104 F.Supp. 187; Jones v. Scofield Bros., D.C.Md., 73 F.Supp. 395; Marmor v. Port of New York Authority, 203 Misc. 568, 116 N.Y.S.2d......
  • Longpre v. Joint School Dist. No. 2, of Missoula and Mineral Counties
    • United States
    • Montana Supreme Court
    • July 31, 1968
    ...of Hartford City, 124 Ind.App. 30, 112 N.E.2d 891 (1953); Pigg v. Brockman, 79 Idaho 233, 314 P.2d 609 (1957); Rittmiller v. School Dist. No. 84, 104 F.Supp. 187 (D.C.1952); McGrath Building Company v. City of Bettendorf, 248 Iowa 1386, 85 N.W.2d 616, 68 A.L.R.2d 1429 (1957). A third and ex......
  • Schoening v. U.S. Aviation Underwriters, Inc.
    • United States
    • Minnesota Supreme Court
    • March 15, 1963
    ...held directly that the purchase of liability insurance by a municipal corporation did not constitute a waiver, and Rittmiller v. School Dist. No. 84 (D.Minn.), 104 F.Supp. 187. The Rittmiller case is not in point as it considers the liability of a school district under Minn.St. 471.42 and 4......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT