Tort Legal Definition

What is a Tort?” 

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  • Tort

By Michael D Beckwith

Tort legal definition: The word tort comes from the french word for wrong. In a legal setting, tort refers to an act or omission, either intentional or unintentional, that leads to the loss or harm of another person. All negligence cases are considered torts as well as any intentional wrongs resulting in harm. Tort law aims to provide relief to injured parties for harms caused by others, to direct liability on the parties responsible for said harm, and to deter others from committing harmful acts. There are three categories of tort:

  • Intentional torts (i.e. intentionally hitting someone)
  • Negligent torts (i.e. accidents that cause harm to another) 
  • Strict liability torts (i.e. liability for making and selling defective products)

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Tort in Medical Malpractice Cases

Malpractice, a kind of tort, is most common against lawyers or doctors. In a medical setting, this is known as medical malpractice. Medical malpractice is committed when a medical professional fails to uphold the standard of care or doesn’t properly execute their duty towards a patient or client resulting in some form of loss or harm.

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