LS311_Chapter_4 - 95735_04_Ch04_079-101.qxp 11/6/08 7:24 AM...

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UNIT CONTENTS Torts and Cyber Torts Intellectual Property and Internet Law Criminal Law and Cyber Crime 6 5 4 95735_04_Ch04_079-101.qxp 11/6/08 7:24 AM Page 79
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orts are wrongful actions. 1 Through tort law, society compensates those who have suffered injuries as a result of the wrongful conduct of others. Although some torts, such as assault and trespass, originated in the English com- mon law, the field of tort law continues to expand. As new ways to commit wrongs are discovered, such as the use of the Internet to commit wrongful acts, the courts are extending tort law to cover these wrongs. As you will see in later chapters of this book, many of the lawsuits brought by or against business firms are based on the tort theories discussed in this chapter. Some of the torts examined here can occur in any context, including the busi- ness environment. Others, traditionally referred to as business torts, involve wrongful interference with the busi- ness rights of others. Business torts include such vague con- cepts as unfair competition and wrongfully interfering with the business relations of another. Two notions serve as the basis of all torts: wrongs and com- pensation. Tort law is designed to compensate those who have suffered a loss or injury due to another person’s wrong- ful act. In a tort action, one person or group brings a personal THE BASIS OF TORT LAW T suit against another person or group to obtain compensation (monetary damages ) or other relief for the harm suffered. The Purpose of Tort Law Generally, the purpose of tort law is to provide remedies for the invasion of various protected interests. Society recognizes an interest in personal physical safety, and tort law provides reme- dies for acts that cause physical injury or interfere with physi- cal security and freedom of movement. Society recognizes an interest in protecting real and personal property, and tort law provides remedies for acts that cause destruction or damage to property. Society also recognizes an interest in protecting cer- tain intangible interests, such as personal privacy, family rela- tions, reputation, and dignity, and tort law provides remedies for invasion of these protected interests. Damages Available in Tort Actions Because the purpose of tort law is to compensate the injured party for the damage suffered, it is important to have a basic understanding of the types of damages that plaintiffs seek in tort actions. Compensatory Damages Compensatory damages are intended to compensate or reimburse a plaintiff for actual losses—to make the plaintiff whole and put her or him in the 1. The word tort is French for “wrong.” 80 AFTER READING THIS CHAPTER, YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS: 1 What is a tort? 2 What is the purpose of tort law? What are two basic categories of torts?
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This note was uploaded on 02/05/2011 for the course BUSINE LS 311-01 taught by Professor Niveacastrofigueroa during the Spring '10 term at Kaplan University.

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LS311_Chapter_4 - 95735_04_Ch04_079-101.qxp 11/6/08 7:24 AM...

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