What is torts,its essentials for CLAT/AILET/DU

What is a Tort?

Conduct that harms other people or their property is generally called a tort.  It is a private wrong against a person for which the person may recover damages (liquidated). The conduct that is a tort may also be a crime.

  • Now,wrongful conduct would comprise of,for example,trespassing,defamation etc. where a person’s legal rights are infringed.

Hence,important things about tort are:

“The conduct that is a tort may also be a crime.” Now,lets see what is the difference between the two.

What is the difference between a Tort and a Crime?

A crime is a wrong arising from a violation of a public duty A tort is a wrong arising from the violation of a private duty.



i) Less serious wrongs are considered as private wrongs and have been labelled as civil wrong.

i) More serious wrongs have been considered to be public wrongs and are known as crimes.

ii) The suit is filed by the injured person himself.

ii) The case is brought by the state.

iii) Compromise is always possible.

iii) Except in certain cases, compromise is not possible.

iv) the wrongdoers pays compensation to the injured party.

iv) The wrongdoer is punished.

Essentials of tort

There must be an act or an omission on the part of the alleged wrongdoer. To be liable for the tort a person must have done some act which he was not supposed to do.

  1. INJURIA SINE DAMNO – Violation of a legal right without the causation of any actual damage. For e.g. if someone trespass (enters without permission) upon your property, he can be held responsible, even if that trespass did not cause any actual damage whatsoever to you.
  2. DAMNUM SINE INJURIA – Causing of damage without the violation of legal right. E.g. GLOUCESTER GRAMMAR SCHOOL, the defendant opened a new school near paintiffs school, whereby the students taking admission in the plaintiffs school reduced. This caused financial injury to the plaintiff.

Next article continues with General defences in tort.

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