Hastings International and Comparative Law Review


Patricia Barlow


The Accident Compensation Act (ACA) of New Zealand provides a uniform system of rehabilitation and compensation for personal injury or death resulting from accidents in New Zealand. This Article examines how the private international law provisions of the Act apply in aviation product liability. The Sixth Circuit case of Bennett v. Enstrom Helicopter Corp. is extensively analyzed. The author argues that the trial and appellate courts in Bennett, in holding the ACA has the exclusive remedy, misinterpreted substantive New Zealand law on recovery for injury or death. She mentions that the ACA left areas of "residual liability" and that Bennett is an example of one category of such liability. The author concludes that the ACA is not the exclusive remedy in a wrongful death action because it left the common law tort of negligence intact.