LAW 522-001 – Civil Procedure II

Indispensable Party


A party is indispensable if:

  1. complete relief cannot be given to the existing parties in its absence,
  2. its absence would expose an existing party to significant risk of double, multiple, or otherwise inconsistent obligations, or
  3. its absence would impair the missing party's ability to adequately protect its interest.

Rule 19(a).

Joint tortfeasors are jointly liable and a plaintiff can choose to sue only one, so absence of another is not indispensable, even in most comparative fault states.

A party can still only be joined if feasible, as personal jurisdiction, venue, and subject matter jurisdiction are still required.