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§49.18 Waiver of Right of Way

The Case: Minton v. Gobble , 304 S.W.2d 337 (Tenn. App. 1957).

The Basic Facts: Byrd was driving south in the outer (west) lane. Minton was driving north in the inner lane. Minton signaled to turn left across the two south-bound lanes. Byrd slowed to allow Minton to turn, but Minton remained at a stop, so Byrd proceeded down the road. About 50 feet before Byrd reached the spot Minton was stopped, Minton suddenly pulled in front of Byrd, causing an accident.

The Bottom Line:

  • "It is argued for defendant Minton, however, that when Byrd approached, and saw Minton signaling a left turn, Minton acquired the right-of-way, and it became the duty of Byrd to yield the right of way to Minton, under 1950 Code Supp. section 2700.8(b)." 304 S.W.2d at 340.
  • "Even if Minton had the right-of-way under this statute, it would seem that he waived such right when he stopped and lead Byrd to believe he meant for Byrd to pass. The statutes regulating the right-of-way do not cover the whole duty of motorcyclists. In addition to the requirements of the statutes, the motorist has a common law duty to use ordinary care to avoid endangering or injuring another upon the highway, and the jury could well find that Minton breached this duty and was guilty of negligence. Maxwell v. Kirkpatrick, [116 S.W.2d 240]; Southern Coach Lines v. Haddock, [194 S.W.2d 347]." Id.

After an accident, many injury victims and their families want more information on the accident and their legal rights. Consequently, many of them have found their way to these pages. While we are happy you are here, please understand Day on Torts: Leading Cases in Tennessee Tort Law was written to be a quick, invaluable reference for Tennessee tort lawyers. While the book provides the leading case for more than 300 tort law subjects and thousands of related case citations, it is not a substitute for personalized legal advice from a qualified lawyer.

Rather than researching these legal issues alone, we urge you to contact one of our award-winning lawyers who can sit down with you, review your case, answer your questions and clearly explain your rights and your options in a no-cost, no-obligation consultation. Our experienced attorneys handle all personal injury and wrongful death cases on a contingency basis, so we only get paid if we win. If for any reason you are unable to come to our office, we will gladly come to you.

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The foregoing is an excerpt from Day on Torts: Leading Cases in Tennessee Tort Law, published by John A. Day, Civil Trial Specialist, Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers, recipient of Best Lawyers in America recognition, Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ rated attorney, and Top 100 Tennessee Mid-South Super Lawyers designee. Read John’s full bio here.

To order a copy of the book, visit www.dayontortsbook.com. John also blogs regularly on key issues for tort lawyers. To subscribe to the Day on Torts blog, visit www.dayontorts.com.

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