Torts


Questions to Consider

Consider these questions while reading this module:

  • What is the purpose of tort law?
  • What is the diffence between an intentional tort and negligence?
What are the intentional torts against persons? against property?
  • What are the elements of each of these torts?
  • What defenses, if any, are available for each tort?
What are the elements necessary to establish a cause of action for negligence?
  • Why does a defendant's duty toward the plaintiff depend on who the defendant is (e.g., common carrier, landowner, professional, child, good samaritan)?
  • What is the difference bewteen actual and proximate cause in determining if the defendant's conduct caused the plaintiff's harm?
  • What defenses are available to counter a claim of negligence?
How do the "special" negligence doctrines differ from ordinary negligence?
  • What is "negligence per se" and "res ipsa loquitur" and how do these doctrines operate in a negligence lawsuit?
  • What is the difference between "dram shop" liability and "social host" liability? Why do these rules exist?
  • What are the "special business torts?"
  • When do the courts strict liability (i.e., liability without fault)? punitive damges? Why?
Header image CC by Melissa Wiese