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LOUIS LIEBERMAN v. ABAT'S AUTO TAG SERVICE (08/02/85)

filed: August 2, 1985.

LOUIS LIEBERMAN, APPELLANT,
v.
ABAT'S AUTO TAG SERVICE, INCORPORATED



Appeal from the Order in the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County, Civil No. 4959 April Term, 1982

COUNSEL

Wilbur Greenberg, Philadelphia, for appellant.

Roger J. Harrington, Philadelphia, for appellee.

Spaeth, President Judge, and Johnson and Shoyer,*fn* JJ. Spaeth, President Judge, files a concurring opinion.

Author: Johnson

[ 344 Pa. Super. Page 351]

Appellee, Abat's Auto Tag Service, Inc. (Abat's), issued a temporary registration card and plate to one Nolan Brown in November of 1980, allegedly without proof of insurance

[ 344 Pa. Super. Page 352]

    coverage. In April of 1981, appellant Lieberman was struck and injured by Brown in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Appellant brought suit in October of 1983, charging that his injuries were a direct result of Abat's negligence in issuing the registration. Appellee demurred to the complaint, arguing that the temporary registration would have necessarily expired sixty days after it was issued and that appellant's exclusive remedy would be pursuant to the Pennsylvania No-fault Motor Vehicle Insurance Act, 40 P.S. ยง 1009.101 et seq. In February of 1984, the trial court sustained the preliminary objections and dismissed appellant's claim, with prejudice, upon a finding that a cause of action had been made out, but that Abat's liability ceased with the expiration of the temporary registration. We agree with the trial court's conclusion and affirm accordingly; however, we find that appellant has failed to state a cause of action for negligence and that his only remedy is under the No-fault Act.*fn1

Appellant's attempt to causally connect the injuries he sustained with Abat's alleged negligent issuance of the temporary registration is unconvincing. As our courts have stated, "'One who negligently creates a dangerous condition cannot escape liability for the natural and probable consequences thereof, . . .'" Thornton v. Weaber, 380 Pa. 590, 594, 112 A.2d 344, 346 (1955) quoting Mars v. Meadville Tel. Co., 344 Pa. 29, 31, 23 A.2d 856, 857 (1942) (emphasis added). Appellant fails to argue, and it is unclear to us, how his injuries were the natural and probable result of Abat's action.

Appellant relies upon Lyngarkos v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Transportation, et al., 57 Pa. Commw.Ct. 121, 426 A.2d 1195 (1981) to establish that a cause of action does exist against Abat's, even without proximate cause. In that case, our Commonwealth Court held that "an automobile dealer who issues a temporary

[ 344 Pa. Super. Page 353]

    registration card and plate to a purchaser without first securing proof of No-fault insurance is answerable in trespass to one injured by the dealer's neglect." Id. at 125, 426 A.2d at 1198. However, this duty was clearly imposed in furtherance of the concerns of the No-fault Act in order "to protect all motorists by insuring that they will have recourse to the comprehensive, expeditious and equitable No-fault insurance coverage required of all motorists." Id. at 126, 426 A.2d at 1198.

The Commonwealth Court went on to state that

Lyngarkos is not eligible for basic loss benefits precisely because, under the No-fault Act, he is not entitled to receive basic loss benefits since the accident occurred outside of the Commonwealth, Lyngarkos was not insured and ...


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