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in law, the violation of some duty clearly set by law, not by a specific agreement between two parties, as in breach of contractcontract,
in law, a promise, enforceable by law, to perform or to refrain from performing some specified act. In a general sense, all civil obligations fall under tort or contract law.
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. When such a duty is breached, the injured party has the right to institute suit for compensatory damagesdamages,
money award that the judgment of a court requires the defendant in a suit to pay to the plaintiff as compensation for the loss or injury inflicted. Damages are the form of legal redress most commonly sought.
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. Certain torts, such as nuisancenuisance,
in law, an act that, without legal justification, interferes with safety, comfort, or the use of property. A private nuisance (e.g., erecting a wall that shuts off a neighbor's light) is one that affects one or a few persons, while a public nuisance (e.g.
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, may be suppressed by injunctioninjunction,
in law, order of a court directing a party to perform a certain act or to refrain from an act or acts. The injunction, which developed as the main remedy in equity, is used especially where money damages would not satisfy a plaintiff's claim, or to protect personal
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. Many crimes are also torts; burglary, for instance, often constitutes trespasstrespass,
in law, any physical injury to the person or to property. In English common law the action of trespass first developed (13th cent.) to afford a remedy for injuries to property.
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The history of Anglo-American tort law can be traced back to the action for trespass to property or to the person. Not until the late 18th cent. was the currently observed distinction made between injury willfully inflicted and that which is unintentional. In the early 19th cent., negligencenegligence,
in law, especially tort law, the breach of an obligation (duty) to act with care, or the failure to act as a reasonable and prudent person would under similar circumstances.
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 was distinguished as a separate tort, and it has come to supply a large portion of tortious litigation.

The general tendency today is to rule that the breach of any duty constitutes a tort, rather than to rule that an alleged tort must fit into some previously recognized variety, such as assault, false imprisonment, or libel. Some courts treat any willful unjustified injury as tortious, while others hold that the act must be defined as tortious by law, regardless of the perpetrator's motive. Torts that injure reputation or feelings are personal torts; those violating statutory rights are constitutional torts; those involving real or personal property are property torts. Property torts include several classes of torts, such as automobile accidents, negligence, product liability, and medical malpracticemalpractice,
failure to provide professional services with the skill usually exhibited by responsible and careful members of the profession, resulting in injury, loss, or damage to the party contracting those services.
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In some areas, tort liabilityliability,
in law, an obligation of one party to another, usually to compensate financially. It is a fundamental aspect of tort law, although liability may also arise from duties entered into by special agreement, as in a contract or in the carrying out of a fiduciary duty.
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 can be assigned without a finding of fault, as in no-fault automobile insurance. In areas where the finding of fault remains crucial, and the awards of compensatory or punitive damages can be substantial, tort litigation can be time-consuming and costly. Its defenders claim tort litigation promotes safety and economic efficiency, while critics argue the process does little but raise insurance premiums while providing windfalls to a handful of lawyers. Efforts to reform tort law hope to set limits to damage settlements and to broaden no-fault statutes for use in alternative forms of litigation. In the 1990s many U.S. states, pressed chiefly by conservatives and business interests, passed laws limiting damages, but state courts have repeatedly voided these limits as violations of "open courts" guarantees in state constitutions.


Law a civil wrong arising from an act or failure to act, independently of any contract, for which an action for personal injury or property damages may be brought
References in periodicals archive ?
Of particular note is the book's careful analysis of specific tort law settings, an analysis that demonstrates the clarity and vision for which Ripstein's work is known.
21) However, the leading legal scholar at the turn of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Sir Frederick Pollock, (22) was strongly committed to the idea that negligence provided the unifying principle in English tort law, and so was predisposed against strict liability.
Tort law expressly indicates that an individual cannot be forced to give up a portion of his liberty to benefit another, no matter how little the cost or how great the benefit.
51) Although Japanese tort law applies more broadly, the court observed that the only significant difference between Japanese and California tort law is that California tort law does not recognize negligent infliction of emotional distress claims as a result of religious conduct, but California does recognize negligent infliction of economic injury by a religious entity.
The circuits have not delved so deeply into the measure of damages in their opinions on the issue, but implicit in permitting plaintiffs to bring state tort law claims is the idea that plaintiffs will recover compensatory damages for past harm.
Desde el ano de su fundacion hasta el 2005, el grupo--compuesto por un conjunto de academicos provenientes de Austria, Belgica, Republica Checa, Francia, Alemania, Italia, Holanda, Portugal, Reino Unido, Espana, Suiza y, fuera de la Union Europea, Israel, Estados Unidos y Suiza--ha elaborado diversos estudios, que han sido compilados en una coleccion llamada Principles of European Tort Law, publicada por la editorial Kluwer Law International (58).
that [without a boundary between tort law and contract law], contract law would drown in a sea of tort," the U.
In the migraine example, if the physician's assistant is found negligent, traditional tort law allows for the hospital to also have exposure.
But should legal pluralism contribute to the creation of a more liberal society by asking that the message of liberal tort law be embraced?
Doctrinal Background--First Amendment Versus State Tort Law C.
7) Tort law finds liability; corporation law excuses it.
Yet there was very little study of the law of tort that might explain any such differences, either social (how did tort law interact with other parts of society that achieved much the same thing?