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Torts
San Joaquin College of Law
Goodrich, Christine A.

Negligence:
Brief definition:  Negligence occurs when a person has a duty to another to conform to a standard of care, the person breaches the standard, the breach is the actual and legal cause of damages.
COMPONENTS OF A NEGLIGENCE CAUSE OF ACTION
A duty to use reasonable care.
 
A failure to conform to the required standard. This commonly called a breach.
Reasonably close casual connection between the conduct in the resulting injury. This is commonly called causation.
Actual cause “but for the [negligent act] the injury would not have occurred.”
Proximate cause: majority (Wagonmound #1) and minority (Polemis).
Actual loss or damage resulting to the interests of another must occur.
DUTY OF CARE:Duty to use the standard of care of a reasonable person of ordinary prudence in the circumstances to protect reasonable foreseeable plaintiffs.
LESSOR/LESSEE or VENDOR/VENDEE:
Generally no duty (majority rule), but there are six exceptions where they need to exercise reasonable care, which extends to the guests of the lessee/vendee, family, employees, sub-tenants:
Premises are leased for Admission of the Public
Lessor has to know use is for the public.
ndisclosed dangerous condition known to the lessor;
Lessor did not disclose condition
Lessor is liable until the lessee reasonably should have discovered it.
Lessor Actively conceals condition
Lessor is liable until lessee discovers the condition and has a reasonable opportunity to repair it.
ondition on the premises is dangerous to persons outside the premises;
Conditions 1-3 only apply if condition existed at time of transfer.
 
Lessor also has liability for Parts the lessor retains control of that the lessee uses.
Lessor contracts to repair or a Statute requires repair
Lessor is Negligent in Making repairs, and lessee is ignorant that the repairs were not made or were negligently made.
Conditions 4-6 apply at anytime after transfer.
 
AND Rowland: Landowner owes reasonable care to all.
Was the plaintiff foreseeable:
Reasonably foreseeable plaintiffs (have to apply both to a situation for RFP):
Cardozo (Majority): Only people in the foreseeable zone of danger from negligent act “range of apprehension.”
 
Explain what the zone of danger is, why the zone of danger is applicable, and where it ends.
Andrews (Minority): A duty to one, is a duty to all…so basically everyone.
Negligently Inflicted Emotional Distress (NIED):  Is not a cause of action!
One party is claiming severe emotional distress;
Can be direct victim, or a bystander (see chart below); and,
 
 
 
Minority-Minority (CA)
Direct Victim
Physical Manifestation (PM) of Emotional Distress (ED).
No Physical Manifestation (PM) of ED.
 
 
PM of ED; and,
Zone of Danger; and,
Close Relation (parents, spouse, siblings, grand, children, adopted, step child.  The longer they’ve been in each other’s lives, the stronger showing you have.
No PM of ED; and,
Located “near” and contemporaneous (same time) perception; and,
Close Relation (same as majority).
Located “near”; and,
Perceived as occurs; and,
Immediate family (lineage, step, adopt, etc.).
 
Exceptions to PM of ED where foreseeability of harm is obvious:
Negligent transmission of someone’s death; or,
Negligent interference with a dead body.
chart to determine duty:
Applies to landowners, including people who lease property.
Duty of Reasonable Care:
Duty to warn of known dangers; or,
Duty to make safe known dangers; or,
Duty to inspect for unknown dangers.
Landowner Chart
Conditions (Natural)
(eg Water, Wind, Ice, etc.)
Unreasonable Dangerous Artificial Conditions
(eg Baseball park)
Activity (generally something moving)
(eg Hitting a baseball)
Persons outside property
No duty (generally)
 
is to divide on rural/urban lines.
   Rural duty to make safe known dangers.
   Urban duty is same as rural including duty to
inspect for unknown dangers.
– Duty to warn and make safe known dangers and inspect for unknown.
– look at actual conditions.
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
Note 1 in Selevan case
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
Selevan case
Persons on the property
 
 
 
Unknown Trespassers
*exception children (see below)
No Duty
No Duty
No Duty
Known Trespassers
No Duty
Warn or make safe known dangers
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
Licensee/Social Guest
(Relative, Door-to-door Salesman, Safety)
Warn or make safe known dangers.
Warn or make safe known dangers.
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
Business Invitee
(there for the business of the owner)
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
 
Reasonable care (all 3 above could apply).
 
After you do D, B, C, and D you need to state Rowland (NEED TO KNOW THIS CASE): Landowner owes reasonable care to all.
If no duty is found on the above chart, you have to go through D, B, C, and D under Rowland.
Land occupier (L/O) has a duty to children where an artificial condition is highly dangerous

g rescued due to his original negligent act.
Where a non-professional rescuer sues plaintiff to recover for injuries sustained during the course of the rescue.
To achieve rescuer status one must demonstrate (McCoy v. Suzuki):
:  Modified standard to protect the rescuers and allow recovery.
Fact: Rescuers are reasonably foreseeable plaintiffs.
A rescuer is usually not reckless.
SOC is either (these have probably already been proven):
Defendant was negligent (caused the need for defendant to be rescued by rescuer)
Need to do D, B, C, D
Defendant owes a duty to use the applicable SOC when negligent towards a person rescuer rescued (rescuee)
Need to do D, B, C, D
PG v. BU for plaintiff rescuer:
robability of harm to RESCUER from RESCUE?
How likely is the harm to occur?
What could happen, what you think about before acting.
ravity/severity of harm resulting from RESCUE?
How badly could I get hurt because of what could happen?
urden plaintiff would bear from not doing the rescue?
Moral, Conscious, Time, Money, etc.
tility/Benefit of doing the rescue?
Same: Breach, Causation (looks at original defendant’s negligence), and Damages as the RPoOP.
STANDARDS OF CARE (SOC): To obtain the standard you are going to use/apply.
Objective standard: Would a ‘reasonable person of ordinary prudence’ in the position of the defendant have conducted himself as the defendant did?
Mythical person that is why above is an objective standard.
DOES not matter if you are insane (Jesus take the wheel, Breunig, CB 170) or intoxicated.
Still treated as a reasonable person.
How do you determine if SOC has been met:
CHANGES TO SOC AND ULTIMATELY TO PG v. BU:
(Trimarco)
Hydroplaning, Herr CB 163
Matters you are deemed to know (DeLair):
General Knowledge.
Physical Laws, what goes up must come down.
Community/Common Knowledge.
(exceptions can be factored into the PG v BU, which may lower the PG values) Vasconez CB 162
 
 
Cannot be 1) defendant created or 2) common knowledge/known circumstances (Hydroplaning, Herr CB 163).