Report No. 85
9.2. Survival of the issue of action-Death of tort feasor.-
The substantive question is dealt with in section 306 of the Indian Succession Act;1 a cause of action for personal injury not causing death does not survive in favour of, or against, the wrong-doer's legal representatives under that section. In regard to certain cases, the Legal Representatives Suits Act, 1855 is also relevant. Therefore, when a tort-feasor dies, proceedings for damages for bodily injury caused by him do not survive under the Succession Act and the question of substituting his legal representative2 does not, in civil suits, arise.
But, in regard to proceeding under the Motor Vehicles Act, the Motor Vehicles Act expressly over-rides section 306 of the Succession Act,3 and provides that the death of a person in whose favour a certificate of insurance had been issued shall not be a bar to survival of any cause of action (arising out of the event which has given rise to a claim) against his estate or against the insurer. The cause of action thus survives under the Motor Vehicles Act where the wrong-doer is the holder of a certificate of insurance. Moreover, in practice, most claims under the Motor Vehicles Act would be against the insurer and the wrong-doer's death does not therefore have much practical importance.
1. Section 306, Indian Succession Act, 1925.
2. Order 22, rule 1, Code of Civil Procedure, 1908.
3. Section 102, Motor Vehicles Act, 1939.