Welcome

Welcome to my Law blog specifically intended as an aid to law students. I will post comments and white papers, from time to time, and I am happy to carry on conversations with students who are in need of help in law school.


I am most conservative and appropriate in my approach so if you comment and/or have questions to ask, please do so with an equal degree of appropriateness.



I am a Professor of Law at Concord Law School, an Internet Law School located in Los Angeles, though I live, teach and otherwise work out of Lakewood, Colorado, resting up against the foothills just west of Denver.

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I have no set schedule of posting, but I hope you will check in from time to time.

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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

7 - Torts Essay Answer In IRAC Format

TORTS ESSAY ANSWER IN IRAC FORMAT


Essay Question: A throws a rock at B and C striking B. C sees A throw the rock at her and is concerned that the rock will strike her.

(Call of the question:)

1. What intentional tort would be appropriate for which B can sue A?
2. What intentional tort would be appropriate for which C can sue A?

I. Can B appropriately sue A for battery? Battery is the volitional act done with the requisite intent which causes the plaintiff to suffer a harmful or offensive contact.

Was A’s act volitional? A voluntary act is one that is done by the actor's own volition and is not an involuntary reflex. The facts say that A throws a rock at B which is a voluntary act and not a reflex. Therefore A’s act is volitional.

Was A’s act done with the requisite intent? Intent can be where the defendant desires the consequences of the act, when the defendant is substantially certain that the act will cause the harmful or offensive contact to occur or for some intentional torts, where an act or tort aimed at one party can be transferred to another person. In this case, the facts tell us that A throws the rock at B, indicating that A desired the consequences of hitting B. Even if this is not the case, it seems reasonable that A at least was substantially certain that throwing the rock at B would cause a harmful or offensive contact. Therefore A’s act is intentional.

Did B suffer a harmful or offensive contact? Harmful contact is generally objective – that which a reasonable person would find harmful or offensive. In this case, the rock thrown by A struck B. It seems probable that being struck by a thrown rock would be harmful, but we don’t have any facts to support that here. However, a reasonable person would probably find that being struck by a thrown rock would be at least offensive. Therefore A’s act caused a harmful or offensive contact to B.

B can appropriately sue A for battery.

2. Can C appropriately sue A for assault? Assault is the volitional act done with the requisite intent which causes the plaintiff to suffer reasonable apprehension of an immediate battery.

Was A’s act volitional? A voluntary act is one that is done by the actor's own volition and is not an involuntary reflex. The facts say that A throws a rock at C which is a voluntary act and not a reflex. Therefore A’s act is volitional.

Was A’s act done with the requisite intent? Intent can be where the defendant desires the consequences of the act, when the defendant is substantially certain that the act will cause the harmful or offensive contact to occur or for some intentional torts, where an act or tort aimed at one party can be transferred to another person. In this case, the facts tell us that A throws the rock at C, indicating that A desired the consequences of hitting C. Even if this is not the case, it seems reasonable that A at least was substantially certain that throwing the rock at B would cause a reasonable apprehension of harmful or offensive contact. Therefore A’s act is intentional.

Did C suffer a reasonable apprehension of harmful or offensive contact? A reasonable apprehension is objective – that which a reasonable person would find as apprehensive. In this case, the rock thrown by A struck C. It seems probable that one seeing a rock being thrown at her would be reasonably apprehensive. Therefore A’s act causes a harmful or offensive contact to C.

C can appropriately sue A for assault.

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This may not be a perfect answer, but it IS a good model answer.

Professor Doug Holden
© 2009 Douglas S. Holden. All rights reserved.

10 comments:

  1. Professor Holden,

    Thank you for spending the time to establish this blog. I am a student at Concord and have read and studied IRAC written and explained various ways. I have enjoyed reading your explanations as they have already bolstered what I have read and added clarity.

    Thanks again and I have ensured that your site is bookmarked so I can return daily to use this information as another source of study and understanding.

    JD

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  2. JD - Thank you for such a kind comment. So far, the response to the blog has been very good and I am having fun. I am glad that you find it helpful.

    Doug

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  3. Thanks Professor Holden for explaning IRAC in the simplest way. I was one of your students at Concord for Wills and Trusts. As I prepare to take the Bar this Feb. 2010, it just reinforces the approach.

    Maria

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  4. Thanks, Maria. I thought I had already responded to this, but I don't see it. Let me know how the bar goes! Knock 'em dead.

    Doug

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  5. VERY nice resource, I hope to see more!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Professor Holden:

    Your blog is so helpful for me to understand what
    the format of my outline should be.

    You are the best! I'm glad you are my professor now. Everything is starting to make sense because of your organization and presentation of the materials.

    Signed: "I once was lost and now am found..."

    ReplyDelete
  7. You are most welcome. Thank you for your kind comments.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I needed to find a site like this with a teacher aiming to empower learning....
    thank you kindly,

    Jan

    ReplyDelete
  9. Professor Holden,
    I especially like way you follow IRAC format ...
    Thank you for having a site designed to mentor and empower. Fabulous!
    Jan

    ReplyDelete
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