Senate Bill 1510 (Arnold – 1957)
Chapter 1700, Statutes of 1957 - SB 1510
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Code of Civil Procedure sections 875 through 880 were enacted in 1957 following legislative passage of Senate Bill 1510. (See Exhibit A, #1e) Senator Stanley Arnold introduced the legislation on January 22, 1957. (See Exhibit A, #1a)
The Senate Committee on Judiciary and the Assembly Committee on Judiciary heard the measure. (See Exhibit A, #2) Senate Bill 1510 was approved by the Legislature on June 7, 1957, signed by Governor Goodwin J. Knight on July 5, 1957, and enacted as Chapter 1700 of the Statutes of 1957. (See Exhibit A, #1e and #2)
Senate Bill 1510 was amended three times before it was enacted into law. (See Exhibit A, #1b through #1d and #2) A full understanding of legislative intent may be dependent upon knowing about the various proposals as introduced into the bill and then as amended throughout the bill’s consideration by the Assembly and the Senate Committees reviewing this measure. (See Exhibit A, #1) This can be particularly helpful where your focus is on specific language; by contrasting that enacted with the prior proposals in the bill one can gain insight as to the intended meaning or the apparent controversy generated by the language of interest. (Id.)
Legislative Counsel summarized Senate Bill 1510 as it was sent to the Governor in its June 14, 1957 Report, stating:
Provides, with some exceptions, such right of contribution as to causes of action accruing on or after January 1, 1958, where one such tortfeasor has discharged joint judgment or paid more than pro‑rata share, but provides that when right of indemnity exists between such tortfeasors, there is no right of contribution. Provides that when one or more persons are held liable solely for tort of another, as in respondent superior, they shall contribute single pro-rata share, as to which there may be indemnity between them.
Provides, as to causes of action accruing at such time, that when release, dismissal, or covenant not to sue or not to enforce judgment is given to one of several persons liable for same tort, it does not discharge other tortfeasors from liability unless it so provides, but it reduces claims against others in amount stipulated therein or amount of consideration paid therefore, whichever is greater, and it discharges tortfeasor to whom given from liability for contribution.(See Exhibit A, #7, document PE-3)