Cline v. HomuthAnnotate this Case
Plaintiff Ronald Lee Cline was severely injured when his motorcycle collided with a turning car driven by a teenager with a provisional license. He settled with the driver and the driver’s parents for their $100,000 insurance policy limit. Cline executed a release that released the driver and his parents “and any other person, corporation, association, or partnership responsible in any manner or degree” for the accident. Cline subsequently sued defendant Berniece Delores Homuth, the driver’s grandmother and the sole adult in the car with him at the time of the collision, for negligent supervision. Homuth raised the release as an affirmative defense. She moved for summary judgment; the trial court denied the motion. A court trial followed, centering on the validity of the release and whether Homuth was an intended third party beneficiary of the release. Cline appealed the judgment in favor of Homuth, arguing the extrinsic evidence demonstrated that Homuth was not an intended beneficiary of the release. The Court of Appeal affirmed, finding that Cline failed to provide sufficient evidence to counter Homuth’s showing that she was an intended beneficiary of the release.