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The Function and Philosophy of Tort

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Ciara Hackett

on 1 October 2013

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Transcript of The Function and Philosophy of Tort

The Function and Philosophy of Tort
What is tort?
General "Protections"

Protection from Harms against the person
Biggest Group of torts - most popular in court
Negligence and Trespass!
Protection of Property
Trespass, Negligence and Nuisance
Protection of Reputation
Protection of Economic Interests
What is the Purpose of Tort Law
SEE: Glanville Williams, “The aims of the law of tort” [1951] Current Legal Problems 137

Justice Linked!
Setting Standards Linked
It is tangled but it does make sense (I promise!)

The tangles give it the capacity to develop and adapt to change

Questions to ask yourself:
• Is the claimant’s loss one that might be satisfied by a tort? And if so which tort?
• Do the facts and evidence meet the legal requirements of the tort in question keeping in mind the applicable burden of proof?
• Any defences or limitations that need to be taken into account?
• Are there any other parties we might consider?

Aims and Objectives of this lecture

To introduce you to the module

• What is the law of torts?
• What is the purpose of the law of torts?
• What lies at the core of torts?
• What is the future for the law of torts?

What is the law of torts
At its most basic - the law of civil wrongs

“[A]civil wrong for which the legal remedy is an action brought by means of civil proceedings in the High Court or County Court, by, or on behalf of, the injured party (the plaintiff or claimant) for damages (money/compensation) or some other legal remedy (injunction)”.
What is it not?
Torts v Criminal Law

State prosecutor that takes the action
Victim just a witness
Burden of Proof?

Claimant or their representative takes the action
Aim is to compensate the claimant (or representative)

By that logic then


All torts are civil
wrongs but not all
civil wrongs are torts

Obligations = Contract + Tort

Tort = GENERAL Obligations

Contract = Specifics!
Problems Students Encounter...
"Vicarious Liability"
The heart of Tort law

Donoghue v Stevenson [1932] AC 562.

Changed Tort law
Judicial Commentary?
Academic Commentary

Introduction of CONTROLS
Full transcript