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The practice of resubmitting an inconsistent verdict to the jury for clarification is well-accepted. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 49(b) provides that general verdict sheets may be 'return[ed] to the jury for further consideration of its answers and verdict' when the answers to interrogatories are inconsistent with each other or with the general verdict. Fed.R.Civ.P. 49(b). Although Rule 49(a), dealing with special verdicts does not explicitly provide for resubmission in case of an inconsistency, courts have held that, because the rule does not prohibit it, special verdicts are also subject to the practice. Mateyko v. Felix, 924 F.2d 824, 827 (9th Cir.1990). See also Karl v. Burlington N. R.R. Co., 880 F.2d 68, 72-73 (8th Cir.1989); Santiago-Negron v. Castro-Davila, 865 F.2d 431, 444 (1st Cir.1989); Auwood v. Harry Brandt Booking Office, Inc., 850 F.2d 884, 890-91 (2d Cir.1988); Nance v. Gulf Oil Corp., 817 F.2d 1176, 1178 (5th Cir.1987).


Mateyko's embrace of the practice is based on the notion that resubmission 'promotes both fairness and efficiency.' Id. That principle was reaffirmed in Larson v. Neimi, 9 F.3d 1397 (9th Cir.1993), when the court held that the resubmission of an inconsistent special verdict to a ...

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