BL-Chapt7 - Print Chapter Page 1 of 18 Negligence and...

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Negligence and Strict Liability Chapter Introduction 7-1 Negligence 7-1a The Duty of Care and Its Breach 7-1b The Injury Requirement and Damages 7-1c Causation 7-2 Defenses to Negligence 7-2a Assumption of Risk 7-2b Superseding Cause 7-2c Contributory and Comparative Negligence 7-3 Special Negligence Doctrines and Statutes 7-3a Res Ipsa Loquitur 7-3b Negligence Per Se 7-3c "Danger Invites Rescue" Doctrine 7-3d Special Negligence Statutes 7-4 Strict Liability 7-4a Development of Strict Liability 7-4b Abnormally Dangerous Activities 7-4c Other Applications of Strict Liability Chapter Recap Page 1 of 18 Print Chapter 2010-8-29 ..
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Chapter Introduction The intentional torts discussed in Chapter 6 all involve acts that the tortfeasor (the one committing the tort) intended to commit. In this chapter, we examine the tort of negligence, which involves acts that depart from a reasonable standard of care and therefore create an unreasonable risk of harm to others. Negligence suits are probably the most prevalent type of lawsuits brought against businesses today. It is therefore essential that businesspersons understand their potential liability for negligent acts. In the concluding pages of this chapter, we also look at another basis for liability in tort– strict liability . Under this tort doctrine, liability does not depend on the actor's negligence or intent to harm, but on the breach of an absolute duty to make something safe. Page 2 of 18 Print Chapter 2010-8-29 ..
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7-1 7-1a Negligence The Duty of Care and Its Breach The Reasonable Person Standard Duty of Landowners Duty to Warn Business Invitees of Risks In contrast to intentional torts, in torts involving negligence , the tortfeasor neither wishes to bring about the consequences of the act nor believes that they will occur. The actor's conduct merely creates a risk of such consequences. If no risk is created, there is no negligence. Moreover, the risk must be foreseeable; that is, it must be such that a reasonable person engaging in the same activity would anticipate the risk and guard against it. In determining what is reasonable conduct, courts consider the nature of the possible harm. Creating a very slight risk of a dangerous explosion might be unreasonable, whereas creating a distinct possibility of someone's burning his or her fingers on a stove might be reasonable. Many of the actions discussed in the chapter on intentional torts constitute negligence if the element of intent is missing (or cannot be proved). Suppose that Juarez walks up to Natsuyo and intentionally shoves her. Natsuyo falls and breaks her arm as a result. In this situation, Juarez has committed an intentional tort (battery). If Juarez carelessly bumps into Natsuyo, however, and she falls and breaks her arm as a result, Juarez's action constitutes negligence. In either situation, Juarez has committed a tort.
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BL-Chapt7 - Print Chapter Page 1 of 18 Negligence and...

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