Business Law Ch. 10 Notes.docx

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Western University
Management and Organizational Studies
Management and Organizational Studies 2275A/B
Philip King

Business Law Ch. 10 Notes Chapter 10 Tort Law  Tort: a harm caused by one person to another, other than through breach of contract, and for which the law provides a remedy  Tort law provides a means whereby compensation, usually in the form of damages, may be paid for  Trespass to Land: wrongful interference with someone’s possession of land o E.g. leaving your car in a parking garage without buying a ticket  Deceit or Fraud: a false representation intentionally or recklessly made by one person to another that causes damage o E.g. customer buys a car that is said to have a new engine and it actually doesn’t  Negligence: unreasonable conduct, including a careless act or omission, that causes harm to another o E.g. professional gives a client incompetent advice o E.g. when a bar over-serves an intoxicated customer if the customer gets injured or causes injury o E.g. when a consumer purchases a defective product  Tort-feasor: person who commits a tort  Tort law seeks to impose liability based on fault  If what happens is not reasonably foreseeable, the person has not committed a tort  Liability will vary from province to province  A central function of tort law is to compensate an injured party when the injury is the result of someone else’s blameworthy conduct  Tort law does not provide remedy in all circumstances How Torts are Categorized  Torts can be categorized into two main groups: o Intentional Torts: a harmful act is committed on purpose  Assault: the threat of imminent physical harm (no actual physical contact)  Battery: intentional infliction of harmful or offensive physical contact o Torts committed through negligence  When someone is negligent, she is liable for damages even though she did not intentionally cause the event in question  E.g. someone slips on a spill in a store causing a customer to break their arm – store can be sued for negligence even though they did not intentionally cause the customer to fall Tort Law and Criminal Law  Two distinct but different legal consequences: tort law and criminal law  In addition to tort law, the Criminal Code prohibits one person from assaulting another, except in self defense  Important differences between tort claims and criminal prosecutions: o Purposes of the Actions  Purpose of a criminal prosecution is to censure behavior and secure the punishment of a fine, imprisonment, or both  In tort law, the objective is to compensate the victim for the harm suffered due to the culpability of another o Commencing the Actions  In criminal law, the legal action is called a prosecution to the “accused” or “defendant” usually by Crown prosecutors with the victim called the “complainant”  In tort law, the injured party brings the legal action; civil action includes the “defendant” with the victim called the “plaintiff” o Proving the Actions  To secure a conviction, the Crown must prove that force was applied, that it was intentional, and that the actins were so serious as to “would, maim, disfigure, or endanger” the complainant  The crown has the burden of proof in a criminal action  The prosecutor must prove al the elements of the offence beyond a reasonable doubt based on “reason and common sense”  Criminal convictions can result in depriving persons of their liberty; much more serious than requiring them to pay damages in civil action  Ends in a fine, imprisonment, or both  In tort, the injured party must prove that the defendant is responsible for the assault and battery, on the balance of probabilities
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