Various types of tort cases exist to provide victims of negligence and abuse specific avenues to justice. Read more from the Guardian Legal Network.
Seven Types of Tort Cases
The main goal of tort law is to help those who have been victims of injury or harm due to the actions—or the inaction—of others. Through the tort process, these people can find relief and seek justice. One of the first steps towards that justice is understanding the different types of tort cases, so that when you need to begin the process, you know where to start.
At the Guardian Legal Network, our mission is to help victims of negligence and abuse understand their options and connect them to resources that can bring them closure and peace. This includes helping them identify which type of tort case they are eligible to file.
Three General Types of Torts
There are three main types of tort cases you may need to know: intentional torts, negligence torts, and strict liability torts.
An intentional tort is when a party (a person, business, or larger corporation) purposefully does something that injures someone else. An example of this would be if someone intentionally hit another person. The person who hit the victim has committed an intentional tort, and they’re therefore liable to the victim for their injuries.
Intentional tort claim examples can include:
- False imprisonment
- Intentional infliction of emotional distress
- Trespass to land or property
As a note, for assault and battery, they are considered criminal charges when there is criminal intent behind the action. This would mean that the person is making a conscious decision to commit a criminal act.
To be considered a tort case, there only needs to be intent to commit the action. The interaction needs to be against the will of the victim and result in harm. There does not need to be criminal intent for a case to be considered a tort.
A negligence tort occurs when someone has a duty to someone else and fails to uphold that duty. This breach of duty results in an innocent party being harmed or injured in some way.
An example of this is when a licensed driver ignores traffic laws and drives recklessly. Since they hold a driver’s license, they have the duty to act in accordance with local traffic laws. If someone is injured because of their reckless driving, they’ve committed a negligence tort, and they are liable to the victim for damages.
Negligence tort claim examples can include:
- Bicycle accidents
- Car accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Truck accidents
Strict Liability Torts
A strict liability tort holds a defendant liable for their actions, regardless of whether they actively made the decision to do something.
For example, if a defendant kept a dangerous animal as a pet, that animal escaped, and it attacked someone else, the defendant would be liable for the injuries. It doesn’t matter if the defendant intended for the attack to happen, or even if they took precautions to prevent it. They’re still liable.
Strict liability tort claim examples can include:
- Animal attacks
- Abnormally dangerous activities
- Defective products
Four Specific Types of Torts
In addition to these three general categories, there are several specific types of torts that you can file depending on the type of wrong committed against you. As part of our work at the Guardian Legal Network, we specialize in the following specific tort claims to help victims of corporate or systemic negligence.
Below are four specific tort claim examples to help you better understand how you might seek justice, based on your specific circumstances: defective drug torts, defective medical device torts, defective product torts, and personal injury torts.
Defective Drug Torts
A defective drug tort occurs when a patient suffers a serious side effect from taking a prescription or over-the-counter drug. Side effects can range from gastrointestinal issues to immune system diseases to cancer.
One example of a defective drug tort case is the ongoing Zantac lawsuit. In 2019, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that Zantac (ranitidine) contained nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers NDMA to be a probable carcinogen, meaning it has been linked to an increased risk of cancer. In April 2020, following the FDA’s announcement, all Zantac and ranitidine products were removed from the market.
Defective Medical Device Torts
A defective medical device tort occurs when a defective medical device causes serious injury or death. In this situation, the medical device manufacturer may be liable for the injuries.
One example of this tort is the ongoing defective hernia mesh cases. Thousands of lawsuits have been filed against hernia mesh manufacturers such as C.R. Bard, Ethicon/Johnson & Johnson, Atrium Medical Corp, and Gore-Tex, claiming that these manufacturers should have prevented defective devices from being used or, at the least, warned patients about potential complications should they choose to use the item.
Defective Product Torts
A defective product tort occurs when a defective product is put on the market and then injures a consumer. The victims can then hold the business that produced the product responsible for what they have suffered as a result of using that product.
An example of a defective product case is the ongoing talcum powder lawsuits. Johnson & Johnson’s talcum-based powder has been marketed to women as part of their feminine hygiene routine since the early 1900s. The talc used to create this talcum powder contained asbestos, which has been known to cause mesothelioma and ovarian cancer. Thousands of women have sued Johnson & Johnson for their failure to disclose the link between their products and cancer.
Personal Injury Torts
A personal injury tort occurs when a person or company’s negligent acts cause some kind of injury or emotional distress. A personal injury can have a huge impact on your physical, emotional, and financial well-being.
One example of a personal injury case is a rideshare assault lawsuit. Rideshare companies such as Uber and Lyft are a popular form of transportation for many, especially those who want a safe ride home after a night of drinking. Unfortunately, many people have come forward claiming that they have been sexually assaulted by their Uber or Lyft driver.
Victims have started to sue rideshare companies, accusing them of poor screening during the hiring process, not providing enough supervision of their drivers while working and throughout the course of their employment, and, as a result, causing stress and harm to users. These victims are seeking justice and increased safety measures, including the video recording of rides and expanded background checks.
Start Your Journey Towards Justice Today
If you or a loved one has been injured by the actions or negligence of another, you deserve justice for the physical and emotional harm you’ve suffered. It’s our mission to end corporate negligence and help victims get the justice they deserve. Guardian Legal Network can help put you in touch with the right people to start you on your path to closure. Contact us today for more information.
- FDA. “Statement alerting patients and health care professionals of NDMA found in samples of ranitidine”, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/statement-alerting-patients-and-health-care-professionals-ndma-found-samples-ranitidine. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Justia US Law. “Elmore et al v. Smith & Nephew, Inc., No. 1:2012cv08347 – Document 25 (N.D. Ill. 2013)”, Justia, https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/illinois/ilndce/1:2012cv08347/275524/25/. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- FDA. “Class 2 Device Recall DEPUY ASR XL ACETABULAR CUP SYSTEM”, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfres/res.cfm?id=96142. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Smith & Nephew Orthopaedics. “Urgent Field Safety Notice”, Smith & Nephew, https://www.smith-nephew.com/global/assets/pdf/products/surgical/bhr_urgent_field_safety_notice.pdf. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Diana Zuckerman and Danielle Shapiro. “Talcum Powder and Ovarian Cancer”, National Center for Health Research, http://www.center4research.org/talcum-powder-ovarian-cancer/. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Toby Nwazor. “The Talcum Powder Lawsuit – The Truth, The Lies, and The Cancer Victims.” The Huffington Post, https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-talcum-powder-lawsuit_1_b_10609474. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Maria Cramer. “19 Women Sue Lyft as Sexual Assault Allegations Mount”, The New York Times, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/05/business/lyft-sexual-assault-lawsuit.html. Accessed January 6, 2022.
- Shannon Bond. “Uber Received Nearly 6,000 U.S. Sexual Assault Claims In Past 2 Years”, NPR, https://www.npr.org/2019/12/05/785037245/uber-received-nearly-6-000-u-s-sexual-assault-claims-in-past-2-years. Accessed January 6, 2022.