Biz Law 2.docx - Basis of Tort Law-Categories of...

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Basis of Tort Law -Categories of Torts -Intentional Torts -Unintentional Torts (Negligence) -Strict Liability Torts Strict Liability -Abnormally dangerous activities -ultra hazardous or abnormally dangerous activities: -involve serious potential harm; -involve high degree of risk that cannot be made safe; and - Are not commonly performed in the community or area -Other applications -Wild animals -owners keeping wild animals are strictly liable for injuries -persons who keep domestic animals are liable IF the owner knew or should have known that animal was dangerous Nuisance -refers to the type of injury a plaintiff has sustained -policy behind nuisance laws -Two types of nuisances: -Public nuisance -Private nuisance -Public nuisance: interference with a right common to the general public -Private nuisance: unreasonable and substantial interference with P’s use and enjoyment of his land -Requirements: -P has an interest in land that has been substantially interfered with AND -D behaved in a negligent, abnormally dangerous, or intentional manner Public Nuisances -Public nuisance: interference with a right common to the general public -Held to be public nuisance -health hazards (breeding of a large # of animals too close to residential areas; maintenance of brothels) -Releasing noxious odors or harmful chemicals into the air -Blocking public roads -Maintaining an unlicensed business Public Nuisances -Standing to sue(government) -Substantial harm required -Must injure the public at large: there has been actual injury, or the possibility of injury, to the public at large Standing to sue (private parties)
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- Requirement of particular damage: been harmed in a manner that is different in kind from the harm suffered by the public at large -Standing to sue (private parties) -Example: an oil tanker runs aground, discharging thousands of gallons of oil into the ocean near the town of Orchard Beach, Maine. A class action is brought by commercial fisherman and clam diggers whose livelihood is impaired. The complaint is based on a public nuisance theory. - Court held: The fisherman and clam diggers have suffered the requisite “damage different in kind, rather than simply in degree”, from that suffered by the rest of the public generally; their own direct exercise of the public right to fish and clam-dig has been interfered with. -Remedies available -injunctions -Compensatory Damages -Punitive Damages Private Nuisance Private nuisance: unreasonable and substantial interference with P’s use and enjoyment of his land. -Trespass deals with the exclusive possession of your property -Distinguished from trespass -Both nuisance and trespass can overlap -Requirement One: P must have interest in land -Tenants and family members? -Requirement two: Substantial interference -Substantial damage= only if person in the community of normal sensitivity would be seriously bothered (objectivity test) -Abnormally sensitive plaintiff cannot recover -Abnormally sensitive plaintiff usually cannot recover
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