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Encyclopedia > Intentional infliction of emotional distress
Tort law I
Part of the common law series
Intentional torts
Assault  · Battery
False arrest  · False imprisonment
Intentional infliction of emotional distress
Property torts
Trespass to chattels
Trespass to land  · Conversion
Detinue  · Replevin  · Trover
Dignitary and economic torts
Slander and libel  · Invasion of privacy
Fraud  · Tortious interference
Alienation of affections
Breach of confidence  · Abuse of process
Malicious prosecution  · Conspiracy
Defenses to intentional torts
Consent  · Necessity
Self defense and defense of others
Fair comment (as to slander/libel)
Other areas of the common law
Contract law  · Property law
Wills and trusts
Criminal law  · Evidence

Intentional infliction of emotional distress (IIED) is a common law tort claim for intentional conduct that results in extreme emotional distress. Some courts and commentators have substituted mental for emotional, but the tort is the same. Image File history File links Scale_of_justice. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... This article concerns the common-law legal system, as contrasted with the civil law legal system; for other meanings of the term, within the field of law, see common law (disambiguation). ... An intentional tort is a category of torts that describes a civil wrong resulting from an intentional act on the part of the tortfeasor. ... At common law, battery is the tort of intentionally (or in Australia negligently) and voluntarily touching another person without lawful excuse or justification. ... False arrest is a common law tort, where a plaintiff alleges he or she was held in custody without reasonable cause or an order issued by a court of appropriate jurisdiction. ... False Imprisonment is a common law tort, and possibly a misdemeanor crime, wherein a person is intentionally confined without legal authority. ... Trespass to chattels is a tort whereby the infringing party has intentionally (or in Australia negligently) interfered with another persons lawful possession of a chattel. ... Trespass to land is a common law tort that is committed when an individual intentionally (or in Australia negligently) enters the land of another without lawful excuse. ... In law, conversion is a tort that deals with the wrongful interference with goods. ... In tort law, detinue is an action for the wrongful detention of goods from an individual who has a greater right to immediate possession than the current possessor. ... Replevin is an Anglo-French law term (derived from repletir, to replevy). ... Trover signifies finding. ... In British and American law, as well as other legislative systems based thereon, libel and slander are two forms of defamation (of character). ... Invasion of privacy is a legal term essentially defined as a violation of the right to be left alone. ... Tortious interference, in the common law of tort, occurs when a person intentionally damages the plaintiffs contractual or other business relationships. ... In United States law, alienation of affections is a tort action brought by a deserted spouse against a third party alleged to be responsible for the failure of the marriage. ... The tort of breach of confidence, is a common law tort that protects private information that is conveyed in confidence. ... Abuse of process is a common law intentional tort. ... Malicious prosecution is a common law intentional tort. ... In the law of tort, the legal elements necessary to establish a civil conspiracy are substantially the same as for establishing a criminal conspiracy, i. ... Consent (as a term of jurisprudence) is a possible justification against civil or criminal liability. ... In tort law, the defense of necessity is divided between private necessity (where a person commits a tort for the defense of his own property) and public necessity (where a person commits a tort for the public good, such as cutting down someone elses trees to stop the spread... This article and defense of property deal with the legal concept of excused (sometimes termed justified) acts that might otherwise be illegal. ... Fair comment is a legal term for a common law defense in defamation cases (libel or slander). ... A contract is a promise or an agreement that is enforced or recognized by the law. ... Property law is the area of law that governs the various forms of ownership in real property (land as distinct from personal or movable possessions) and in personal property, within the common law legal system. ... In the common law, a will or testament is a document by which a person (the testator) regulates the rights of others over his property or family after death. ... The law of trusts and estates is generally considered the body of law which governs the management of personal affairs and the disposition of property of an individual in anticipation and the event of such persons incapacity or death, also known as the law of successions in civil law. ... Criminal law (also known as penal law) is the body of statutory and common law that deals with crime and the legal punishment of criminal offenses. ... The law of evidence governs the use of testimony (e. ... This article concerns the common-law legal system, as contrasted with the civil law legal system; for other meanings of the term, within the field of law, see common law (disambiguation). ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...

Contents


Reason for Creation of IIED

IIED was created in tort law to address a problem that would arise when applying the common law form of assault. The common law tort of assault did not allow for liability when the threat was not imminent. A common case would be a future threat of harm that would not constitute common law assault, but would nevertheless cause emotional harm to the recipient. IIED was created to guard against this kind of emotional abuse, thereby allowing a victim of emotional distress to receive compensation in situations where he or she would otherwise be barred from compensation under the common law form.


Elements

Intentional act

The intent of the act need not be to bring about emotional distress. A reckless disregard for the likelihood of causing emotional distress is sufficient. For example, where a defendant refused to inform a plaintiff of the whereabouts of her child for several years, though that defendant knew where the child was the entire time, the defendant could be held liable for IIED even though he had no intent to cause distress to the parent. A defendant or defender is any party who is required to answer the complaint of a plaintiff or pursuer in a civil lawsuit before a court, or any party who has been formally charged or accused of violating a criminal statute. ... A plaintiff, also known as a claimant or complainant, is the party who initiates a lawsuit (also known as an action) before a court. ...


Extreme and outrageous conduct

The conduct must be heinous and beyond the standards of civilized decency or utterly intolerable in a civilized society. Whether the conduct is illegal does not determine whether it meets this standard. IIED is also known as the tort of "outrage," due to a classic formulation of the standard: the conduct must be such that it would cause a reasonable person to exclaim "Outrageous!" in response. The reasonable man or reasonable person standard is a legal fiction that originated in the development of the common law. ...


An example of an act which might form the basis for a claim of intentional infliction of emotional distress would be sending a letter to an individual falsely informing the person that a close family member had been killed in an accident..


Pleading practices

In civil procedure systems (such as in the United States) that allow plaintiffs to plead multiple alternative theories that may even overlap or contradict each other, a plaintiff will usually bring an action for both intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent infliction of emotional distress (NIED). This is just in case the plaintiff later discovers that it is impossible to prove at trial the necessary mens rea of intent; even then, the jury may still be able to rule for them on the NIED claim. Civil procedure is the body of law that sets out the process that courts will follow when hearing cases of a civil nature (a civil action). These rules govern how a lawsuit or case may be commenced, what kind of service of process is required, the types of pleadings or... The tort of negligent infliction of emotional distress (NIED) is a controversial legal theory and is not accepted in many United States jurisdictions. ... The mens rea is the Latin term for guilty mind used in the criminal law. ... Intent in law is the planning and desire to perform an act. ...


There are some reported cases in which a plaintiff will bring only a NIED claim even though a reasonable neutral observer could conclude that the defendant's behavior was probably intentional. This is usually because the defendant may have some kind of insurance coverage (like homeowners' insurance or automobile liability insurance). As a matter of public policy, insurers are barred from covering intentional torts like IIED, but may be liable for NIED committed by their policyholders. See deep pocket. Outdated American slang term; it usually means extensive financial wealth or resources. It is usually used in reference to big companies or organizations (ex: the American tobacco companies have deep pockets), although it can be used in reference to individuals (i. ...


Hostility towards IIED claims

Courts in most jurisdictions take a decidedly unfavorable stance towards IIED claims. It is felt that they are generally frivoulous claims for non-quantifiable harm, and often are appended to other more substantive claims merely as an afterthought. Meeting the element of conduct that is so outrageous as to be beyond the bounds of civilized society is extremely difficult, and consequently most claims fail.


The New York Court of Appeals, for example, has stated that "Indeed, of the intentional infliction of emotional distress claims considered by this Court, every one has failed because the alleged conduct was not sufficiently outrageous." (internal citations omitted) Howell v. New York Post, 81 N.Y.2d 115, 612 N.E.2d 699, 596 N.Y.S.2d 350 (1993). The Court of Appeals is New Yorks highest appellate court, created in 1847, replacing the Court for the Trial of Impeachments and the Correction of Errors. ...


First Amendment considerations

The U.S. Supreme Court case Hustler v. Falwell involved an IIED claim brought by the evangelist Jerry Falwell against the publisher of Hustler Magazine for a parody ad that described Falwell as having lost his virginity to his mother in an outhouse. The Court ruled that the First Amendment protected such parodies of public figures from civil liability. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C., (large image) The Supreme Court of the United States, located in Washington, D.C., is the highest court (see supreme court) in the United States; that is, it has ultimate judicial authority within the United States... Holding The creators of parodies of public figures are protected by the First Amendment against civil liability, unless the parody includes false statements of fact made in knowing or reckless disregard of the truth. ... Jerry Lamon Falwell (born August 11, 1933, Lynchburg, Virginia) is a Fundamentalist Baptist pastor and televangelist from the United States. ... For other meanings, please see Hustler (disambiguation) Hustler is a United States published pornographic magazine. ... In contemporary usage, a parody is a work that imitates another work in order to ridicule, ironically comment on, or poke affectionate fun at the work itself, the subject of the work, the author or fictional voice of the parody, or another subject. ... In Roman times, Vestal Virgins were strictly celibate or they were punished by death. ... Outhouse near Crabapple Lake, USA, with chipboard walls, and a fiberglass ceiling An outhouse, privy or kybo is an old type of toilet in a small structure separate from the main building which does not have a flush or sewer attached. ... The First Amendment to the United States Constitution is a part of the United States Bill of Rights. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
OUTRAGE DEFENDANTS (797 words)
“Intentionally" means that Defendants desired to inflict severe emotional distress upon Plaintiff or knew to a certainty or substantial certainty that this distress would result from their actions.
Severe emotional distress for the purposes of this instruction, means emotional distress of such substantial quality or enduring quality that no reasonable person in civilized society should be expected to endure it.
In order for [the defendant] to be liable for the emotional distress, however, [the defendant's] conduct must be so outrageous in character and so extreme in degree as to be beyond all reasonable bounds of decency and to be regarded as atrocious and utterly intolerable in a civilized community.
Intentional infliction of emotional distress - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (610 words)
Intentional infliction of emotional distress (IIED) is a common law tort claim for intentional conduct that results in extreme emotional distress.
IIED was created to guard against this kind of emotional abuse, thereby allowing a victim of emotional distress to receive compensation in situations where he she would otherwise be barred from compensation under the common law form.
A reckless disregard for the likelihood of causing emotional distress is sufficient.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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