Torts-Uniform Contribution Among Tortfeasors Act-General Release of One Tortfeasor Releases All

Plaintiff, riding as a passenger with X, was injured in an accident involving the automobile driven by X and a truck owned by defendant. Several months later X paid plaintiff $1,518.87 and received a release. Plaintiff then brought an action in trespass against the defendant, charging negligence in causing the accident and claiming $10,000 damages. The defendant joined X as an additional defendant and X pleaded the release. Defendant’s amended answer claimed that the broad language of the release, “any and all other persons,” within the meaning of the Uniform Contribution Among Tortfeasors Act, provided a release for the defendant also. The lower court entered judgment on the pleadings against plaintiff, and in favor of both X and the defendant. On appeal, held, affirmed, two justices dissenting. The intent of plaintiff to release all of the tortfeasors was clearly evidenced, as required by statute, by the language of the release. Hasselrode v. Gnagey, 404 Pa. 549, 172 A.2d 764 (1961).