Tort Law In The Us Essay

707 WordsSep 10, 20083 Pages
A tort is when someone (a person, group, or company) or something causes another person a personal injury or their property to be damaged. Basically, torts are civil wrongs and are legally the grounds for a lawsuit. These can be willful in nature or due to negligence. Torts are in place to make the person causing the injury or damage to be held responsible (accountable) for these actions, injuries or damages. Personal injury can be a wide variety of injuries from a minor abrasion due to a fall up to and including death. The tort laws in the US do have a statute of limitations. The two basic types of torts are compensatory and punitive. Compensatory allows the personally injured to recover actual costs of the wrong doing. These can include medical bills, property damage cost of repair, and even loss of pay. Punitive damages are not intended to compensate the injured for losses, but as a punishment for the wrong doer and to deter them from committing this act again, or prevent the same negligence in the future. The four elements of a negligence action that must exist for a plaintiff to win a negligence action are duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages/injury. The plaintiff must prove all of these elements in order to be successful in a negligence claim. The first element, Duty, can be looked at almost like the Golden Rule. Everyone has a general duty to carry out a reasonable care toward other people and their property. The second element comes into play if a person acts unreasonably. Their unreasonable action is then considered a breach of duty of care of element one (duty).For the law to determine whether a person's conduct is reasonable or not, the law has to ask: “Would a person of average intelligence and general regard for others have acted in the same way?” If the obvious answer is a no, then the person's behavior was unreasonable and thus, a

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