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Chapter 9 - Torts

Chapter 9 - Torts - Chapter 9 Torts I General Principles a...

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Chapter 9 – Torts I. General Principles a. What is a Tort? i. Tort: 1. Civil wrong that interferes with one’s property or person a. Example, entering someone’s house without his or her permission is an interference and constitutes the tort of trespass b. Causing someone’s character to be question is a wrong against the person and is the tort of defamation b. Tort and Crime Distinguished i. A crime is a wrong that arises from a violation of a public duty 1. Wrong of such a serious nature that the appropriate level of government steps in to prosecute and punish the wrongdoer to deter others from engaging in the same type of conduct ii. A tort is a wrong that arises from a private duty 1. Whenever an act that is committed as a crime causes harm to an identifiable person, that person may recover from the wrongdoer for monetary damages to compensate for the harm a. For the person who experiences the direct harm, the act is called a tort b. For the government, the same act is called a crime iii. When an act is both a crime and a tort, the government may prosecute the wrongdoer for violation of criminal law, and the individual who experiences the direct harm may recover damages 1. Example, O.J. Simpson was charged by the state of California for murder a. Criminal trial was held in which he was acquitted b. Subsequently sued civilly by the families of the murdered for the tort of wrongful death
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i. Ordered to pay nearly $20 million to the families c. Types of Torts i. Three types: 1. Intentional Tort: a. Civil wrong that results from intentional conduct i. Example, striking someone in a fight is an intentional act and would be the tort of battery and possibly the crime of battery 2. Negligence: a. Failure to exercise due care under the circumstances in consequence of which harm is proximately caused to one to whom the defendant owed a duty to exercise due care i. Example, if you run a red light, hit another car, and injure the driver, you did not intend the result 3. Strict Liability: a. Imposes liability without regard to whether there was any intent to harm or any negligence occurred i. Imposed because the activity involved is so dangerous that there must be full accountability 1. Nonetheless, the activity is necessary and cannot be prohibited 2.
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Chapter 9 - Torts - Chapter 9 Torts I General Principles a...

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