California Civil Jury Instructions (CACI) (2017)

103. Multiple Parties

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103.Multiple Parties
[There are [number] plaintiffs in this trial. You should decide the case of
each plaintiff separately as if it were a separate lawsuit. Each plaintiff is
entitled to separate consideration of his or her own claim(s).]
[There are [number] defendants in this trial. You should decide the case
against each defendant separately as if it were a separate lawsuit. Each
defendant is entitled to separate consideration of his or her own
defenses.]
[Different aspects of this case involve different parties (plaintiffs and
defendants). Each instruction will identify the parties to whom it
applies. Pay particular attention to the parties named in each
instruction.]
[or]
[Unless I tell you otherwise, all instructions apply to each plaintiff and
defendant.]
New September 2003; Revised April 2009
Directions for Use
The CACI instructions require the use of party names rather than party-status
words like “plaintiff” and “defendant.” In multiparty cases, it is important to name
only the parties in each instruction to whom the instruction applies. For example,
an instruction on loss of consortium (see CACI No. 3920) will not apply to all
plaintiffs. Instructions on vicarious liability (see CACI No. 3700 et seq.) will not
apply to all defendants. Unless all or nearly all of the instructions will apply to all
of the parties, give the first option for the last paragraph.
Sources and Authority
• “We realize, of course, that multiple defendants are involved and that each
defendant is entitled to instructions on, and separate consideration of, every
defense available and applicable to it. The purpose of this rule is to insure that
the jury will distinguish and evaluate the separate facts relevant to each
defendant.” (Campbell v. Southern Pacific Co. (1978) 22 Cal.3d 51, 58 [148
Cal.Rptr. 596, 583 P.2d 121], internal citations omitted.)
Secondary Sources
4 Witkin, California Procedure (4th ed. 1997) Pleading, § 67 et seq.
27 California Forms of Pleading and Practice, Ch. 318, Judgments, § 318.15
(Matthew Bender)
1 Matthew Bender Practice Guide: California Pretrial Civil Procedure, Ch. 5,
Parties, 5.30 et seq.
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