Trial court acted within its discretion in denying appellant’s motion to conform pleadings to evidence and in refusing to give tendered jury instruction on negligent entrustment

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Appellant, Noah Bailey, appeals following a jury trial at which the jury found for the defendant, State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company (“State Farm”). Bailey raises two issues, which we restate as whether the trial court abused its discretion in (1) denying Bailey’s Motion to Conform Pleadings to the Evidence and (2) in refusing to give Bailey’s tendered instruction regarding a theory of negligent entrustment.


Conclusion
(slip op. at 16-17):  We conclude the trial court acted within its discretion in denying Bailey’s motion to conform the pleadings to the evidence and in refusing to give Bailey’s tendered jury instruction on negligent entrustment.  Affirmed.  
 

Key Analysis (slip op. 14, 16):  Indiana does not recognize a cause of action for negligent entrustment brought by a voluntarily intoxicated adult entrustee, and even if it did, the evidence in this case is insufficient to support a finding that Caudill actually knew Bailey was incapacitated . . . Bailey’s failure to include the final instructions has no effect on the ultimate result, as we conclude that insufficient evidence exists to support the instruction.

About Bose McKinney & Evans LLP

Bose McKinney & Evans LLP is a business law firm, headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, serving both publicly held and privately held businesses, governmental entities and high-growth industries. Our clients include Fortune 100 companies, international manufacturers, national and regional financial institutions, agribusinesses, sports teams, university-incubated start-ups, media, utilities, cities and schools, to name a few. We strive to build strong relationships with our clients as key business advisors, to exceed expectations in the quality of our work, to be knowledgeable about our clients’ businesses and sectors, to be responsive to service needs and to continually seek to improve the delivery of client services. Our ultimate focus is on our clients.
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