Litigation Lawyers in Chattanooga
A "tort" in Chattanooga, Tennessee is essentially any legally-recognized harm for which the victim is legally entitled to pursue compensation from the perpetrator.
In Chattanooga, Tennessee, a tort is essentially any bad thing that one person can do to another, which the law says the victim can sue over. This is called a "cause of action."
In Chattanooga, Tennessee, 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 Chattanooga, Tennessee
Negligence: Negligence is by far the most frequent tort that results in litigation in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Negligence is a failure to exercise the amount of care appropriate for a certain situation, and causing harm to someone else as a result of this carelessness. For instance, running a red light is inherently careless. If you run a red light, and cause personal injury or property damage, you are liable for the harm you caused. Of course, this is just one instance, and negligence can occur in basically any context.
Fraud: Unlike negligence, fraud is an intentional tort. Like negligence, courts in Chattanooga, Tennessee deal with it quite often. Put simply, fraud is a lie told for personal gain. It requires an affirmative misrepresentation, which the speaker knows to be false, intended to induce the victim to render some benefit to the speaker, which causes actual harm (such as financial loss) to the victim. It occurs most commonly when somebody is trying to sell something for more than it's worth, and lies about the nature or value of the product to the buyer. If the buyer relies on the seller's false statements of fact in making the decision to buy the product, the seller has committed fraud. In such a situation, the buyer is legally entitled to compensation for the harm suffered as a result of the fraud.
Battery: Battery is defined by the law of Chattanooga, Tennessee as any contact by one person, with the body of another, which is offensive or harmful. Any conduct that causes physical injury, pain, or emotional distress is battery. Also, you do not need to really touch a person with your own body to commit battery - simply directing harmful contact (say, by throwing a rock) toward another person is sufficient to create liability for battery. Battery can also arise from "offensive" contact, which is basically any physical contact that violates one's sense of personal dignity constitutes battery, and the victim could technically sue over it. Nonetheless, in most cases like that, the plaintiff hasn't sustained any real harm, and will only be able to recover nominal damages, which would be far, far less than the cost of filing a lawsuit.
Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress: Intentional infliction of emotional distress is also called IIED in Chattanooga, Tennessee, 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. Additionally, it must be shown that this conduct directly caused severe emotional distress in the plaintiff, and that that was the defendant's intent. Showing 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 Chattanooga, Tennessee Tort Lawyer Help?
If you believe that you've been the victim of a tort in Chattanooga, Tennessee, you have a right to go to court and try to prove your case. On the other hand, if you find that you are being sued for a tort, and believe that you aren't accountable, you have every right to defend yourself in court.
In either of those situations, you will almost definitely benefit from the counsel of a competent tort lawyer in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In addition to improving your chances of winning your case, should it go to trial, a seasoned lawyer will also make every effort to prevent the issue from going to trial in the first place, by attempting to negotiate a settlement with the other side that's acceptable to both parties.