Chapter 4 (Intentional Torts)
Interference with person:
o Assault and battery
o Invasion of privacy
o False imprisonment
Trespass to land
Interference with chattels
Protection of personal interests (physical well-being, liberty, dignity)
Assault (pg 79)
To intentionally create the perception of imminent and offensive bodily contact.
o Reasonable belief (no touching necessary)
o Reasonable belief (even if the defendant lacked ability)
o Imminent = distant threat insufficient
o Offensive contact = plaintiff doesn’t have to be frightened. It is enough to show
that offensive contact is reasonably anticipated.
Battery (pg 80)
An actual offensive bodily contact.
Mere contact is enough (even if with clothing or an object).
Not every contact is offensive.
The contact doesn’t have to be harmful.
Important for health care professionals as even beneficial action without consent can
Important for businesses that control crowds or remove rowdy customers (will be
vicariously liable for battery if force is not reasonable).
Invasion of Privacy (pg 81)
There is no general tort of invasion of privacy.
Traditionally, our society places a high value on freedom of expression and freedom of
Law in this area is changing rapidly (possible emergence of judge-made tort) but so far
no clear Canadian decisions creating this right of action.
Privacy is indirectly protected by other torts.
Aubry v. Editions Vice-Verca: Note that this is a SCC but was decided under the
Quebec’s civil law. There is legislation in Canada creating obligations to respect the privacy of personal
information in specific situations and sectors (e.g. the Personal Information Protection
and Electronic Documents Act, PIPEDA).
This has raised public consciousness of privacy, but only Nfld., Man., Sask., and BC
have created a statutory tort of invasion of privacy.
False Imprisonment (pg 83)
Occurs when a person is confined within a fixed area without justification.
o Confinement: physical or psychological detention
o Within fixed area: prison, room, car
o Complete confinement: no easy escape available
o Unjustified confinement: no consent or legal authority
Detention may be justified by the Criminal Code.
Powers of arrest and detention:
o Police officers: reasonable belief in commission of crime. No liability even if no
o Private Citizen (including security guards): actual commission of crime. Liable if
reasonable but wrongful belief of crime.
Citizens must be 100% sure if they do citizen’s arrest. Even if your
intentions were good, but your wrong, the person can sue you for false
Trespass to Land (pg 86)
Intentional interference with land.
o Lack of consent
o Lack of legal authority
Although classified a