The following outline is provided as an overview of and introduction to tort law in common law jurisdictions:

Tort law – defines what a legal injury is and, therefore, whether a person may be held liable for an injury they have caused. Legal injuries are not limited to physical injuries. They may also include emotional, economic, or reputational injuries as well as violations of privacy, property, or constitutional rights.

Types of torts

Torts against the person

Torts (trespass) against the person – category of torts that describes a civil wrong that causes physical harm to the complainant:

Negligent torts

Negligence – failure to exercise the care that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in like circumstances

Property torts

Dignitary torts

Dignitary torts – a specific category of intentional torts where the cause of action is being subjected to certain kinds of indignities.

Economic torts

Economic torts – torts that provide the common law rules on liability which arise out of business transactions such as interference with economic or business relationships and are likely to involve pure economic loss. Also called business torts.

Strict and absolute liability torts

Further information: Strict liability and Absolute liability

Liability, defences, remedies



Remedies available vary depending on the type of tort committed and include:


Other terms and principles

See also


  1. ^ MC Mehta v Union of India AIR 1987 SC 1086 (Oleum Gas Leak Case).
  2. ^ Construction Accident Law: A Comprehensive Guide to Legal Liability. Marc M. Schneier. American Bar Association, 1999.
  3. ^ A Selection of Legal Maxims, Classified and Illustrated. Herbert Broom, Herbert Francis Manisty, Charles Francis Cagney. W. Maxwell, 1884, p 262.