COLLECTION: LAW OF TORTS LESSON:GENERAL DEFENSES IN TORTS PRESENTED BY ABHINAVA KRISHNA
ABOUT ME Loves playing cricket .B.A. LL.B. (HONS.), NLSIU, BANGALORE CLAT 2013 (AIR- 36), AILET 2013(AIR- 12) .Follow me on Unacademy at: https://unacademy.in/user/AbhinavKrishna
DEFENSES AVAILABLE UNDER TORT LAW . Consent Plaintiff himself being the wrongdoer Act of God . Inevitable accident Necessity Private Defense Act done in respect to a statutory authority
CONSENT (volunti non-fit injuria - to one who consents, no harm is done) with the former's person or property. If he shows his willingness to allow the actions of the defendant to occur and participates in the defendant's conduct, the defendant cannot be held liable for his acts even if the act is immoral or harmful.
CONTINUED The consent can be actual or implied For example: If a spectator in a cricket match gets hurt by the ball, he is presumed to have consented to accept the risk of suffering any such damage and players cannot be held liable.
CONSENT The test to be implied in inferring consent is that of a reasonable man. For example: If my friend takes a book from my room in my presence and I do not object to it, I cannot later bring a claim against him for theft.
CONSENT - CONTINUED Also, if I own a library and my friend takes books from my library every time without my consent and I do not raise any objections, he has an implied reasonable belief that he can take books without my permission. He has a reasonable belief of my consent. Hence, he cannot be made liable. In cases where the plaintiff lacks the capacity to consent or is coerced to consent or consents under false pretenses, the defendant cannot be excused of his wrongdoing.
PLAINTIFF BEING THE WRONGDOER . The Latin maxim equivalent to this is "ex turpi causa non oritur action" which states that no action arises from a dishonorable cause. . This principles states that when the act of the plaintiff himself is illegal or wrong, he cannot claim compensation under tort law.
CONTINUED For example: If A trespasses B's property and is injured because of the barbed wire fence encompassing B's property, he cannot bring an action against B, as he, by trespassing someone else's property, is himself the wrongdoer. This principle is based upon public policy, as a person who himself has committed an illegal act shall not be helped by the state in getting damages.
ACT OF GOD An act which cannot be foreseen by a reasonable person and which is out of the control of a prudent human being can be said to be an Act of God. Constituents of this defense are: 2. The defendant has no control over it. 3. The defendant has no knowledge and he could not have done anything to mitigate the damage.
NECESSITY This is based upon the principle that when a wrongful act is done for the greater good of the people or to avoid any harm, it can be excused. For example: A sees a fire in his field and in order to extinguish it, he trespasses upon B's property to take water out of the well. A can take the defense of necessity. . This defense is available only if the wrongful act was reasonably demanded on account of the emergency or danger.
ACT DONE IN RESPECT TO A STATUTORY AUTHORITY When the commission of an act, which would otherwise be a tort, has been authorized by a statute, the plaintiff would be remediless. For example: if a railway line passes next to A's house and he is disturbed by the noise of trains, he has no remedy as the act is a statutory act. .The power conferred by the statute should be used with caution. The person authorized by the statute shall commit such act in good faith and he shall not exceed the powers provided to him under the statute.
Pursuing B.A. L.L.B. (Hons.) from National Law School of Bangalore. AIR 36 in CLAT 2013. Follow me for learning more about Law.