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Author Topic: Funny Torts Hypo  (Read 4334 times)

Dicta

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2004, 04:18:56 PM »
Even though I have written many Torts Casebooks, Law Review articles, testified before congress, and am deceased (testate, of course), I have never taken a Torts exam, but assuming the nature of this area of law, the more causes of action you can “make,” the better - even if you find them so ridiculous as I do!
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Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2004, 05:34:58 PM »
Other possible charges might include criminal negligence, criminal recklessness and criminal endangerment. Considering if Bob was zapped with a radar gun before causing the accident, he could also be charged with speeding.
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taterstol

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2004, 07:54:24 PM »
There's also a small issue (but worth mentioning, I think) of whether Alex is liable to Sally. She was injured on his property. If she's in a state that distinguishes between invitees and licensees/trespassers, then Alex's duty was not to be reckless, and he probably is not liable. If she's in a state that's switched to a single standard of care for landowners, then Alex's duty is not to be negligent regardless of Sally's designation.

So then the question would be whether a reasonable person would have placed the tree so close to the road knowing that motorists could potentially hit it. Again, I think not liable, but worth discussing just to establish that he's not.

swifty

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2004, 03:52:07 AM »
There's also a small issue (but worth mentioning, I think) of whether Alex is liable to Sally. She was injured on his property. If she's in a state that distinguishes between invitees and licensees/trespassers, then Alex's duty was not to be reckless, and he probably is not liable. If she's in a state that's switched to a single standard of care for landowners, then Alex's duty is not to be negligent regardless of Sally's designation.

So then the question would be whether a reasonable person would have placed the tree so close to the road knowing that motorists could potentially hit it. Again, I think not liable, but worth discussing just to establish that he's not.

And from there, one would have to ask which came first, the tree or the road?  Would it not be natural property as opposed to real prop, if the tree is 200 years old and this hypo is not in an urban area?  I recognize a duty to landholder if the tree is close to the road, even if it was 200 years old, never altered, and close to a road in an urban area, but not rural.  That's just off the top of my head, no more books tonight.
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Dean Prosser

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2004, 03:57:27 AM »
There's also a small issue (but worth mentioning, I think) of whether Alex is liable to Sally. She was injured on his property. If she's in a state that distinguishes between invitees and licensees/trespassers, then Alex's duty was not to be reckless, and he probably is not liable. If she's in a state that's switched to a single standard of care for landowners, then Alex's duty is not to be negligent regardless of Sally's designation.

So then the question would be whether a reasonable person would have placed the tree so close to the road knowing that motorists could potentially hit it. Again, I think not liable, but worth discussing just to establish that he's not.


Great call!!!   For reference, what is your authority for the landowner duty?

swifty

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #15 on: November 19, 2004, 04:15:28 AM »
Regarding battery, I just heard my prof say blowing smoke in someone's face is`harmful offensive touching.  (the smoke has particles in it)  I think she is`reaching on that one, but hey, if you can get the TOF to buy it, so be it.  That's why this all so fun, right?   ???
And the sign said "Long-haired freaky people need not apply" So I tucked my hair up under my hat and I went in to ask him why. He said "You look like a fine outstanding young man, I think you'll do.  So I took off my hat, I said "Imagine that. Huh! Me workin' for you!"Sign, sign, everywhere a sign..

taterstol

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #16 on: November 19, 2004, 12:24:11 PM »
Re: smoke particles... I agree that it's a stretch, but your Prof said it because there's a case that said it too. It's Leichtman v. WLW Jacor Communications.

Re: landowner duties... Gladen v. Cleveland Greater Regional Transit Authority affirmed a ruling that a man who was beaten and left unconscious on a subway track could not recover against the Transit Authority when his leg was severed by a train unless he showed that the Transit Authority was reckless, because he was not an invitee (his paid ticket didn't give him privileges to be ON the tracks).

Rowland v. Christian (a california case) got rid of the categories and said that it's one standard of care. Our professor said that this has been adopted in about half the states, while the other half still use the invitee/licensee/trespasser designations.

That was a case about social guests, though, which Sally pretty clearly is not. I think the point is that the law varies a lot by jurisdiction and that there's not one right answer anymore.

I think this is all really fun... there's enough doctrinal ambiguity that you get to have real arguments about what the law should recognize as a battery, or what the duties of a landowner should be. If the result you want is compelling enough (i.e., you want the guy who had smoke blown in his face to recover), then you can manipulate the doctrine and get there.

Wild Jack Maverick

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Re: Funny Torts Hypo
« Reply #17 on: November 19, 2004, 07:48:54 PM »
The liability of the landowner whose land supported the tree is in question.
For instance, the hypo does not state whether the accident happened in a rural or urban environment, and it also does not state how far Sally's car traveled onto the property before striking the tree.

Something to consider is the city's or state's right-of-way. Several feet of a landowner's yard is often the responsibility of the city or state. .
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