Tort

A tort is a civil wrong[1] (other than breach of contract) that causes a claimant to suffer loss or harm, resulting in legal liability for the person who commits the tortious act. In some, but not all, civil and mixed law jurisdictions, the term delict is used to refer to this category of civil wrong, though it can also refer to criminal offences in some jurisdictions and tort is the general term used in comparative law.[lower-alpha 1] The word tort stems from Old French via the Norman Conquest and Latin via the Roman Empire.[3] The word 'tort' was first used in a legal context in the 1580s,[lower-alpha 2] although different words were used for similar concepts prior to this time.

Tort law involves lawsuits seeking to obtain civil remedies, typically monetary damages or injunctions. A tort claim can include intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, financial loss, injury, invasion of privacy, and numerous other harms. Tort claims may be compared to criminal law, which deals with criminal wrongs that are punishable by the state. A wrongful act, such as an assault and battery, may result in both a civil lawsuit and a criminal prosecution in countries where the civil and criminal legal systems are separate. Tort law may also be contrasted with contract law, which also provides civil remedies after breach of a duty that arises from a contract; but whereas the contractual obligation is one agreed to by the parties, obligations in both tort and criminal law are more fundamental and are imposed regardless of whether the parties have a contract. In both contract and tort, successful claimants must show that they have suffered foreseeable loss or harm as a direct result of the breach of duty.[lower-alpha 3][lower-alpha 4]


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