The Harding Law Firm News

Understanding Business Torts

Harding Law Firm - Tuesday, September 22, 2015


—Tips From a Business Litigation Lawyer

Tort law is a section of the law that covers misconduct, including negligence, personal injury and malpractice. It can also mingle with other areas of the law, such as business or contract law. Business torts are the improper interference or intentional interference with the business of another.

What is important to note about business torts is that they do not require physical injury or damage to a person’s property; instead, they involve an “injury” to the other business. These can include significant losses, such as:

  • Lost business opportunities
  • Loss of clientele
  • Loss of business relationship

Most business torts involve losses that apply to the future instead of losses from the past. Because these are much more complex than personal injury torts, they do require the assistance of a business attorney that has experience in these types of cases.

Common Types of Business Torts

Business torts are rare, but often it is because business owners do not realize that they have a viable case. Some common examples of business torts can include:

  1. Unfair Competition - This is when a company markets a product that is similar to the plaintiff and follows alongside trademark and copyright infringement. These may involve false advertising claims as well.
  2. Wrongful Interference - This is when a company intentionally interferes with a legitimate business interest of another company. This can include contracts that have tortious interference, interfering with a business’s right to earn a living, and interfering with prospective business opportunities of another business.
  3. Computer Torts - More courts are allowing computer torts. This can include the intentional damage to a computer’s hardware or software that negatively impacts the business’s ability to earn profits.
  4. Disparagement - This happens when one party makes false statements regarding a business’s quality of products or services, which then cause a loss for that business. This can include trade libel, slander, etc. False or fake product reviews can also fall under disparagement.

A company that has been damaged by another does have several remedies at their disposal. The most common is monetary damages, which will reimburse the damaged business for their losses and any future losses that may occur because of the defendant’s tortious conduct.

To see if you have a valid business tort, speak with a business attorney. Contact Charles Harding for a free consultation. You can also call us at 518-384-3400.