Litigation Lawyers in Odessa
In Odessa, Missouri, a "tort" is any wrongful act, besides a breach of contract or a crime, that the judicial system can remedy.
Essentially, a tort in Odessa, Missouri is any wrongful action committed by one individual against another, which gives the victim of the wrongdoing the legal right to sue the wrongdoer. This is identified as a "cause of action."
In Odessa, Missouri, there are laws and court rulings that recognize scores of various torts. Many of these torts are very obscure, and are almost never litigated. In the modern era, the torts that the ordinary person is most likely to face are fraud, negligence, battery, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Types of Torts in Odessa, Missouri
Negligence: In Odessa, Missouri, negligence is the most frequently-litigated tort. It is defined as a failure to act (in any situation) with a reasonable level of care, and causing harm as a result of that carelessness. For instance, if a store that's open to the public fails to remove ice from its front entrance, or put up any kind of warning, even though it knows that the ice is there, it is not exercising reasonable care. If anyone is injured as a result, the store owner will likely be required to compensate them for their injuries. This is, obviously, just an example.
Fraud: In Odessa, Missouri, fraud is a fairly prevalent tort that the local court system has to deal with, though it may not be quite as prevalent as negligence. To put it in the simplest terms possible, fraud is a deliberate lie that causes tangible harm (such as financial loss) to the person to whom the lie is told. Fraud is committed in a wide variety of contexts, but it most often happens when someone is trying to sell a product for more than it's worth. They might lie to a prospective buyer about the product's quality or value. If the buyer relies on this misrepresentation when deciding to buy the product, they are the victim of fraud, and have a right to sue the seller for their financial losses, and possibly recover punitive damages.
Battery: The law in Odessa, Missouri defines battery as any harmful or offensive contact by one person, with the body of another person, without the consent of the victim. Any punch, kick, strike, or slap would precisely amount to battery, since it is harmful, unless it results in a context where the person being battered consented to it (a lawful boxing match, for example). However, conduct that doesn't cause any physical harm, but is "offensive," can also be considered battery. This most often comes up when one person initiates unwanted sexual contact with another.
Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress: Intentional infliction of emotional distress is also called IIED in Odessa, Missouri, and it was not identified as a valid cause of action until fairly recently (for the longest time, physical harm was a requirement before someone could sue for tort damages). To hold a defendant liable for IIED, it must be shown that the defendant engaged in some type of outrageous conduct, targeted at the plaintiff. Moreover, it must be shown that this conduct directly caused severe emotional distress in the plaintiff, and that that was the defendant's intent. Establishing that actual emotional distress occurred is the most difficult element of this tort, and the plaintiff's word is far from sufficient. It often requires intensive examination by a psychiatrist, who will then testify as to the plaintiff's mental state.
How Can A Odessa, Missouri Tort Lawyer Help?
If someone has committed a tort against in you Odessa, Missouri, you have a legal option to seek compensation. Moreover, if someone has sued you, alleging that you committed a tort, you have a right to mount a legal defense.
In either situation, an Odessa, Missouri tort lawyer will be able to advise you of your rights, and ensure that you have the best possible chance of prevailing in your case.