Torts - Torts Case Briefs Owners and Occupiers of Land 1....

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Torts Case Briefs Owners and Occupiers of Land 1. Outside the Premises Taylor v. Olsen Supreme Court of Oregon, 1978 (p. 480) Facts: Plaintiff wrecked into defendant’s tree that had fallen due to deterioration into the adjoining road. Trial Court entered a directed verdict for Defendant; Plaintiff appeals. Issue: Did the defendant have a duty to inform himself whether his tree had decayed by cutting into the bark? Holding: No. Cutting through the bark is not a common or ordinary method of examining trees. Reasoning: The defendant could not have known that his tree was decayed unless he cut into the bark – thus he can’t have had a duty or a responsibility to avert passersby on the adjoining highway from danger of his trees falling unless he knows that his trees are dangerous. Judgment: Affirmed; in favor of defendant. Notes: - Most courts have held that there is no duty to protect persons outside the premises. - If landowner knows tree (and perhaps other components on his land) is defective and fails to take reasonable precautions, then he is liable for negligence 1/7/08 Class Notes: - Defendant’s property; logging the land - We don’t know how long tree was in the road, we presume it wasn’t very long - Plaintiff could not steer around the tree (it was dark and windy) - Defendant was not liable; cutting into trees wasn’t an ordinary method of examining whether a tree has decayed - Would need an expert: how to determine that a tree has decayed? General Rule: Duty of reasonable care (specific to each case) Landowner has a duty of care for adjacent roads/property…depending on the facts…in a big forest with no notice; no duty, for example Natural condition vs. unnatural condition: example: water flowing into a basement from an uphill neighbor versus water overflowing from a broken swimming pool Snow and ice: some urban areas have created municipal codes imposing rule to remove snow & ice from around the home area
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- If the owner knows of danger, he/she has a duty to warn (at least), but may not actually have to correct or make safe Salevan v. Wilmington Park, Inc. Superior Court of Delaware, 1950. Facts: Plaintiff was struck in the back with a baseball while walking down the street past defendant’s ball park. Plaintiff filed suit against defendant. Issue: Did the defendant have a duty to exercise reasonable care so as to prevent injury to travelers using the adjacent streets to its ball park? Holding: Yes, defendant had a duty to prevent injury to travelers using the streets around his baseball park. Reasoning: The defendant was aware that baseballs went out of the park and flew into the adjacent streets from time to time; and took insufficient precautions to safeguard against injury to passersby. Judgment:
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This note was uploaded on 04/27/2010 for the course LAW 840 taught by Professor Tim during the Spring '10 term at University of Louisville.

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Torts - Torts Case Briefs Owners and Occupiers of Land 1....

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