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Contribution Among Joint Tortfeasors- RI Personal Injury

Rhode Island Personal Injury Law

CHAPTER 10-6

Contribution Among Joint Tortfeasors

Index Of Sections

§ 10-6-1  Short title.

§ 10-6-1  Short title. – This chapter may be cited as the “Uniform Contribution Among Tortfeasors Act”.

§ 10-6-2  “Joint tortfeasors” defined. – For the purposes of this chapter, the term “joint tortfeasors” means two (2) or more persons jointly or severally liable in tort for the same injury to person or property, whether or not judgment has been recovered against all or some of them; provided, however, that a master and servant or principal and agent shall be considered a single tortfeasor

§ 10-6-3  Right of contribution declared. – The right of contribution exists among joint tortfeasors; provided however, that when there is a disproportion of fault among joint tortfeasors, the relative degree of fault of the joint tortfeasors shall be considered in determining their pro rata shares.

§ 10-6-4  Payment as prerequisite – Limitation of actions. – A joint tortfeasor is not entitled to a final money judgment for contribution until he or she has by payment discharged the common liability or has paid more than his or her pro rata share of the final money judgment. Actions for contribution shall be commenced not later than one year next after the first payment made by a joint tortfeasor which has discharged the common liability or is more than his or her pro rata share thereof.

§ 10-6-5  Separate settlement with injured person. – A joint tortfeasor who enters into a settlement with the injured person is not entitled to recover contribution from another joint tortfeasor whose liability to the injured person is not extinguished by the settlement.

§ 10-6-6  Effect of judgment against one tortfeasor. – The recovery of a judgment by the injured person against one joint tortfeasor does not discharge the other joint tortfeasors.

§ 10-6-7  Effect of release of one tortfeasor on liability of others. – A release by the injured person of one joint tortfeasor, whether before or after judgment, does not discharge the other tortfeasors unless the release so provides; but reduces the claim against the other tortfeasors in the amount of the consideration paid for the release, or in any amount or proportion by which the release provides that the total claim shall be reduced, if greater than the consideration paid.

However, in circumstances where there are twenty-five (25) or more deaths from a single occurrence, then a release by the injured person of one joint tortfeasor given as part of a judicially approved good-faith settlement, whether before or after judgment, does not discharge the other tortfeasors unless the release so provides but reduces the claim against the other tortfeasors in the amount of the consideration paid for the release.

§ 10-6-7  Effect of release of one tortfeasor on liability of others. – A release by the injured person of one joint tortfeasor, whether before or after judgment, does not discharge the other tortfeasors unless the release so provides; but reduces the claim against the other tortfeasors in the amount of the consideration paid for the release, or in any amount or proportion by which the release provides that the total claim shall be reduced, if greater than the consideration paid.

However, in circumstances where there are twenty-five (25) or more deaths from a single occurrence, then a release by the injured person of one joint tortfeasor given as part of a judicially approved good-faith settlement, whether before or after judgment, does not discharge the other tortfeasors unless the release so provides but reduces the claim against the other tortfeasors in the amount of the consideration paid for the release.

§ 10-6-9  Right of indemnity preserved. – This chapter does not impair any right of indemnity under existing law.

§ 10-6-10  Uniformity of construction. – This chapter shall be so interpreted and construed as to effectuate its general purpose to make uniform the law of those states that enact it.

§ 10-6-11  Severability. – If any provision of this chapter or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the chapter which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this chapter are declared to be severable.

Legal Notice per Rules of Professional Responsibility: The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all lawyers and attorneys in the general practice of law, but does not license or certify any lawyer / attorney as an expert or specialist in any field of practice.

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