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Flashcards in Chapter 5: Business Torts Deck (23)
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Private civil wrong which is awarded money damages, if won


Business Tort

Tort that occurs in a business setting and is committed by or against a business entity: Most common are 1. Products liability 2. Defamation 3. Fraud 4. Interference w/contractual relations



The person who commits the tort


The three categories of torts

1. Unintentional: not intended, negligence. 2. Intentional: purposeful= defamation, invasion of privacy, battery, and false imprisonment 3. Strict Liability: imposed on a business regardless of the care exercised or precautions taken such as selling a defective product (product liability)


Most common unintentional tort?



Duty of care

A person must conform to the standard of care of a reasonable person under the circumstances


Adult activity

A child is held to the standard of care of the average person/adult such as driving a car


Good Samaritan Statutes

Only impose liability in the event of gross misconduct so physicians, and other volunteers during a crisis are not held liable for the results of their actions


Willful and wanton misconduct

An individual who intends his/her act, but not he resulting harm


Business Visitor

One who enters the premise for a business purpose. Ex: When you visit a department store you are a business visitor. The landowner is responsible for a defect he/she knew of or should have known of that the visitor is not likely to discover.



One who comes onto property with the owner's consent or legal right to be on the property


Dram Shop Liability

Civil liability imposed on commercial seller of alcoholic beverages for personal injury caused by an intoxicated driver


Proximate cause

Reasonable connection between the negligence of defendant and harm suffered by the plaintiff


Contributory negligence

A plaintiff may not recover if he/she has any degree of negligence that contributed to the harm, even if 1%. Only used in a few states like North Carolina and D.C


Comparative negligence

As long as the plaintiff's negligence is not greater than the defendant, the plaintiff may recover damages, but the verdict will be reduced by the % of the plaintiff's negligence. Ex: Damages worth $10,00 and plaintiff found to be 20% negligent, then damages collected will be $8,000. This structure is used in most states


Assumption of the risk

The plaintiff knows of danger, but voluntarily exposes himself/herself to the harm. This is a defense to a negligence action.


Imputed negligence/vicarious liability

If a special relationship exists between parties, one person can be held liable for the negligence of the other. Ex: Employer held responsible for the torts of employees while tort is committed within the scope of employment. However, an employer is not liable for torts of an independent contractor.



written or printed defamation



oral or verbal defamation



A statement that is false and intends to harm the reputation of another or lower his/her estimation in the community.


In order for defamation to be actionable...

The libel or slander must be conveyed to a third person- this is known as publication


4 Types of Fraud

1. Embezzlement: illegal use of funds by person who controls those funds 2. Internal theft: taking of company assets by employee 3. Payoffs/kickbacks: worker accepts money or other benefits in exchange for access to business information 4. Skimming: worker takes cash and doesn't record it in the books


Products Liability

Holds sellers of defective products liable for harm caused to the user/consumer even though the seller exercised all possible care in preparation of the sale of the product.