Unintentional Tort – Definition

Cite this article as:"Unintentional Tort – Definition," in The Business Professor, updated September 10, 2019, last accessed October 27, 2020, https://thebusinessprofessor.com/lesson/unintentional-tort-definition/.

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Unintentional Tort Definition

A tort refers to a Wrongful act that leads to legal liability because it causes the claimant to suffer loss or harm.

An unintentional tort refers to an act that is unintended but causes injury, losses, and damages to the victim. When an unintended accident occurs, it can lead to body injury, damage of property or even material loss, such an unintended accident is an unintentional tort.

A common example of unintentional tort is negligence. Due to lack of care or caution by a person, the victim suffers loss or injury.

A Little More on What is an Unintentional Tort

There are two types of tort, intentional tort and Unintentional tort. Unintentional tort occurs as a result of an accident caused by a person which was not intended but caused another person injury, harm or losses.

A popular example on unintentional tort is negligence. In this case, unintended injury or damage is caused to the victim resulting from what could have been prevented if it were a ‘reasonable’ person. Lack of awareness and negligent by the person that causes the unintentional tort causes harm to the plaintiff.

The Unintentional Negligence Tort in Court

Negligence, which is the most common form of unintentional tort can be proven in court. If a plaintiff files a lawsuit against the defendant to negligence, the plaintiff is required to prove three factors in the court. These are;

  • Duty of care: The plaintiff must be able to prove that the defendant owe them duty of care by avoiding careless actions that could result into harm.
  • The plaintiff must also be able to prove that the defendant provide standard care that a ‘reasonable’ person would have provided.
  • The plaintiff must be able to prove that their injuries or losses were caused by the defendant’s actions.

Children are not exempted  from unintentional tort but they are given different attention in court that adults. Although, a child can be held responsible for any harm he caused, there is a distinct standard that the court uses in situations like these. For instance, children who are under six years of age cannot be liable for their actions, rather, parents can be responsible for not properly monitoring the activities of the children.

On the other hand, if a child is caused body injuries by the parent, the parent can be sued for negligence by the child.

References for “Unintentional Tort

https://www.investopedia.com › Economy › Government & Policy

https://uslawessentials.com/glossary/unintentional-tort/

https://study.com/academy/lesson/unintentional-tort-definition-example-cases.html

Academic research for “Unintentional Tort

Administrative Officers’ Tort Liability, Davis, K. C. (1956). Administrative Officers’ Tort Liability. Michigan Law Review, 55(2), 201-234.

Tort Law, Moral Accountability, and Efficiency: Reflections on the Current Crisis, Krauss, M. I. (1999). Tort Law, Moral Accountability, and Efficiency: Reflections on the Current Crisis. Journal of markets & morality, 2(1).

An economic theory of intentional torts, Landes, W. M., & Posner, R. A. (1981). An economic theory of intentional torts. International Review of Law and Economics, 1(2), 127-154.

Tort Liability of the Mentally Ill in Negligence Actions, Splane, S. I. (1983). Tort Liability of the Mentally Ill in Negligence Actions. Yale LJ, 93, 153.

Requiring Sound Judgments of Unsound Minds: Tort Liability and the Limits of Therapeutic Jurisprudence, Morris, G. H. (1993). Requiring Sound Judgments of Unsound Minds: Tort Liability and the Limits of Therapeutic Jurisprudence. SMUL Rev., 47, 1837.

The Concept of Baseline Risk in Tort Litigation, Walker, V. R. (1991). The Concept of Baseline Risk in Tort Litigation. Ky. LJ, 80, 631.

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