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Law of Torts

Legal Remedies in Tort

Let us start this topic by understanding what ‘remedy’ actually means in Law. A party is said to be ‘aggrieved’ when something that they may have been enjoying has been taken away from them by another party. This is an infringement of a party’s rights and it is treatable by law. Similarly, a legal remedy is one such treatment. Let us learn remedies in tort in detail.

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Introduction

When the aggrieved person is taken back to the position that they were enjoying before their rights were infringed, they are said to have been provided with a legal remedy. There are various types of legal remedies.

Remedies in Tort

                                                                                                                                                                      Source:tort.laws.com

For instance, if something that belongs to you has been taken away from you by a party, the court can either ask them to pay you back in money, or ask them to return your belongings as they were, and may also punish the party in some cases.

Remedies in Tort Law are of 2 types

  1. Judicial Remedies: These are the remedies that the courts of law provide to an aggrieved party.
  2. Extra-Judicial Remedies: If the injured party takes the law in their own hand (albeit lawfully), the remedies are called extra-judicial remedies.

Judicial remedies in tort are of three main types

  1. Damages: Damages or legal damages is the amount of money paid to the aggrieved party to bring them back to the position in which they were before the tort had occurred. They are paid to a plaintiff to help them recover the loss they have suffered. Damages are the primary remedy in a cause of action for torts. The word “damages” should not be confused with the plural of the word “damage” which means ‘harm’ or ‘injury’.
  2. Injunction:  Injunction is an equitable remedy available in torts, granted at the discretion of the court. An equitable remedy is one in which the court, instead of compensating the aggrieved party, asks the other party to perform his part of the promises. So, when a court asks a person to not continue to do something, or to do something positive so as to recover the damage of the aggrieved party, the court is granting an injunction.
  3. Specific Restitution of Property: the third judicial remedy available in the Law of Torts is that of Specific Restitution of Property. Restitution means the restoration of goods back to the owner of the goods. When a person is wrongfully dispossessed of his property or goods, he is entitled to the restoration of his property.

Extra-judicial Remedies in Tort

These are of five main types:

  1. Expulsion of trespasser: A person can use a reasonable amount of force to expel a trespasser from his property.
  2. Re-entry on land: In this case, the owner of a property can remove the trespasser and re-enter his property by using a reasonable amount of force.
  3. Re-caption of goods: In this case, the owner of goods is entitled to recapture his/her goods from any person whose unlawful possession they are in.
  4. Abatement: In case of a nuisance, be it private or public, a person (the injured party) can remove the object causing nuisance.
  5. Distress Damage Feasant: Lastly, distress damage feasant. In this case, a person’s cattle/other beasts move to another’s property and his crops are spoiled. The owner of the property is entitled to take possession of the beasts until he is compensated for the loss suffered by him.

Question on Remedies in Tort

Ques. The following scenario falls under which remedy.

Scenario: So, Adam and Dave are neighbours. Branches of a tree growing on Adam’s plot enter Dave’s apartment from over the wall. After giving due notice to Adam, Dave can himself cut or remove the branches if they’re causing him a nuisance.

  1. Expulsion of trespasser
  2. Re-caption of goods
  3. Abatement
  4. Distress Damage Feasant

Ans. The correct answer is option 3.

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