Hatch v. Trail King Indus., Inc., No. 12-1473 (1st Cir. 2012)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff was severely injured in a workplace accident and sued Trail King, the custom manufacturer of the trailer involved in the accident. The First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a jury's finding that Defendant had not been negligent nor in breach of any warranty. In the trial court in that diversity case, Plaintiffs belatedly attempted to amend their complaint to add another claim, one under Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 93A for unfair and deceptive trade practices. The trial judge denied the motion, finding the effort to amend untimely. Plaintiffs did not appeal this denial in their earlier appeal. This case concerned whether Plaintiffs may now maintain an independent suit for the ch. 93A claims against Trail King. The district court dismissed the claims with prejudice, finding that the doctrine of claim preclusion applied. Plaintiffs appealed, arguing that ch. 93A, 9(8) provides an exception to the normal rules of res judicata. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that under the facts of this case, Plaintiffs may not now bring this ch. 93A claim because of the failure to appeal from the denial of the motion to amend.