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AMI 2226 Measure of Damages—Damage to Crops

Arkansas Supreme Court Committee On Jury Instructions-Civil

Ark. Model Jury Instr., Civil AMI 2226
Arkansas Model Jury Instructions-Civil
November 2021 Update
Arkansas Supreme Court Committee On Jury Instructions-Civil
Chapter 22. Damages
AMI 2226 Measure of Damages—Damage to Crops
The difference in the fair market value between the crop that the land would otherwise have produced and the crop that was actually produced, less the difference between what it would have cost to have produced, harvested, and marketed an undamaged crop and what it did cost to produce, harvest, and market the actual crop.
NOTE ON USE
This clause is to be inserted between the two paragraphs of AMI 2222 when the evidence justifies its use.
COMMENT
This instruction embodies the usual measure of damage for loss of annual crops. St. Louis Southwestern Ry. Co. v. Ellis, 169 Ark. 682, 276 S.W. 996 (1925); St. Louis Southwestern Ry. Co. v. Morris, 76 Ark. 542, 89 S.W. 846 (1905). As to perennial crops, several different measures of damages were discussed in Missouri Pac. R. Co. v. Benham, 192 Ark. 35, 89 S.W.2d 928 (1936).
When the crop is destroyed, the measure of damages is its market value at the time of the destruction. St. Louis, I.M. & S. Ry. Co. v. Lyman, 57 Ark. 512, 22 S.W. 170 (1893). But if the destroyed crop is too young to have a market value, and it is too late to plant another, the measure of damages is the rental value of the land. St. Louis, I.M. & S. Ry. Co. v. Saunders, 85 Ark. 111, 107 S.W. 194 (1908).
This instruction should not be given if the crop is not sufficiently mature to ascertain its value. In this situation the measure of damage is rental value of land. Whether the crop is sufficiently mature is a question for the jury. Dickerson Const. Co., Inc. v. Dozier, 266 Ark. 345, 584 S.W.2d 36 (1979).
The trial court may permit proof of “booking” or “futures” crop prices if such proof would not amount to speculation. In determining whether such proof amounts to speculation, the trial court should consider whether the claimant has “booked” sales in the futures market in the past, and whether the claimant has the capacity to manage the crop for predictable future delivery, e.g., irrigation capacity. See McGraw v. Weeks, 326 Ark. 285, 930 S.W.2d 365 (1996).
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