Studies fundamental principles of the law of torts. May include preparation and use of pleadings and other documents involved in the trial of a civil action. Emphasizes personal injury, product liability, and malpractice cases. Lecture 3 hours per week.
GENERAL COURSE PURPOSE
This course is designed to acquaint the student with the substantive law of torts and to enable the student to assist an attorney in the research, preparation and trial of a tort case.
ENTRY LEVEL COMPETENCIES
Although there are no prerequisites for this course, proficiency (at the high school level) in spoken and written English is recommended for its successful completion.
Upon completion of this course, the student should be able to:
- understand the elements of various intentional, negligence, strict liability, and hybrid or statutory torts; and of available affirmative defenses
- analyze fact patterns to identify tort causes of action or affirmative defenses
- recognize the procedural steps and documents used in various stages of a tort case, and assist a lawyer in handling each stage of such a case
- tort liability vs. criminal and contractual liability
- intentional torts and their affirmative defenses
- negligence torts and their affirmative defenses
- strict liability torts and their affirmative defenses
- modern "hybrid" tort actions: defamation, invasion of privacy, and products liability
- vicarious liability
- tort immunities
- stages of a tort case and the legal assistant's role therein
- business and environmental torts
- no fault laws and other proposals for tort law reform