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Monday, April 08, 2013

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit decides one Indiana case today

In NES RENTALS HOLDINGS, INC., et al v. STEINE COLD STORAGE, INC. (ND Ind, MJ Cosbey, a 17-page opinion, Judge Williams writes:

Humberto Menendez tragically died from injuries he suffered while operating a fortyfoot boom lift. His employer, Steine Cold Storage, Inc., had rented the lift from NES Rentals. Menendez’s family filed suit against NES and others, alleging that their negligence caused the death. NES then sought indemnification from Steine pursuant to an indemnification clause in the rental agreement for the boom lift. Indiana courts allow a party to contract to indemnify for the other party’s own negligence but have said that doing so is a “harsh burden” that a party would not lightly accept absent express language in the agreement evidencing such an intention. We agree with Steine that the indemnification clause in the rental agreement does not expressly state, in clear and unequivocal terms as Indiana law requires, that Steine agreed to indemnify NES for NES’s own negligence. We therefore affirm the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Steine.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on April 8, 2013 01:46 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions