Clem on Torts: Chapter 13: Business Torts

Copyright 2014, Richard P. Clem
Richard P. Clem Continuing Legal Eduction

Clem on Torts is a comprehensive review of the material covered in a first-year torts class in an American law school. It is available free of charge on this website, and is also available for purchase as an Amazon Kindle book.

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These torts are rarely covered in most torts courses, but for the sake of completeness, they are included here. And there’s always a chance that one of them will show up on the multistate bar exam, so it’s a good idea to be familiar with them.

The first of these “business torts” is intentional interference with contract. The elements of this tort are:

  1. Intent. The intent relates to all of the elements of the tort.
  2. There must be interference with a contract.
  3. The contract must be valid. It is not necessary that the contract be enforceable, however.

Since this is an intentional tort, it is not required that the plaintiff prove damages in order to establish the tort. As in the case of trespass, the court could award nominal damages (e.g., one dollar).

The other business tort that might show up on the multistate bar exam is false marketing or infringement of trademark. The elements of this tort are:

  1. Use of the plaintiff’s mark.
  2. Likelihood that consumers will be misled.

Fault is not required in order to establish infringement of trademark. Also, the plaintiff need not show actual damages.

Clem on Torts is also available at Amazon as a Kindle book.

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