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What is a Tort Action?

New York Tort law

New York law considers a tort to be a civil wrong. A “tort” is a wrongful act, not including breach of contract or trust, that results in injury to another person, their property, reputation, or the like, and for which the injured party is entitled to compensation. In other words, a tort is a crime that, while not criminal in nature, may entitle compensation to the party has been wronged. Any personal injury lawsuit or other civil action that is not for breach of contract falls under Tort Law.

Who Has Grounds For a Valid Tort Action?

The following criteria must be met to have grounds for a valid tort action:

  • A Duty of Care Was Violated: In order to have a valid lawsuit, the defendant must have violated a duty of care they owed the plaintiff. A duty of care is a legal obligation that an individual or entity has to another person to act with a certain degree of care when performing certain tasks. An individual becomes negligent when they fail to uphold their duty of care. Individuals may be found liable for any injuries that occur as a result of their negligence.
  • The Breach in Duty Was Directly Responsible For the Injury: The plaintiff’s injury must have been directly caused by the defendant’s negligence. The defendant cannot be found liable if their negligence was not the cause of the injury.
  • The Injury Caused Damages: The plaintiff must have suffered either economic or non-economic damages in order to have a valid tort action. The victim does not have a valid lawsuit without suffering tangible damages.

What Compensation is Available to Plaintiffs in a Tort Action?

Any person who suffers a tortious injury may be entitled to receive compensation for damages suffered. The following damages may be available to plaintiffs filing a tort action:

  • Lost Wages: In many cases, the plaintiff bringing the tort action is forced to miss work as a result of their injury. A personal injury lawsuit can help the plaintiff recover any salary not covered by workers’ compensation.
  • Medical Bills: Many tort actions are brought after the plaintiff suffered an injury due to negligence. In many of these cases, the plaintiff’s injury forced them to face high medical bills that may not be covered by insurance. By bringing a tort action, the victim may be able to have all medical bills not covered by insurance compensated, as well as any future medical expenses resulting from the injury.
  • Pain and Suffering: In addition to compensation for monetary damages, victims may be able to receive compensation for excessive pain and suffering. Pain and suffering includes but is not limited to loss of life’s enjoyment and long term physical pain.

In addition to the aforementioned types of compensation, victims may be entitled to recoup monetary damages for any other losses suffered.

If you have suffered an injury due to another’s negligence or been the victim of a wrongful act that caused monetary damages, you may be entitled to compensation. To see if you have a valid lawsuit, call 212-406-1700 or contact us online for a free consultation. Queller, Fisher, Washor, Fuchs & Kool will review your claim to see how we may be of assistance.