Dan, Joey and Mike are teenagers out for a walk on Longmeadow Lane when they spot a bright and inviting Halloween display on the Jones’ property. Without meaning to damage anything, they decide to walk across the lawn to get a closer look. Unknown to them, there is a faulty electrical connection on one of the jack-o-lanterns. Mr. Jones had intended to repair the wiring but he didn’t get around to it before installing the display. In addition, there are a few groundhog holes on the front lawn that Mr. Jones knows about but never worried about because he knows where each one is. As the three teens stealthily creep across the yard toward the lit up decorations, Joey steps right into a groundhog hole, twists his ankle and falls with a howl right into the jack-o-lantern with the shorted wire, causing him to get a shock on his arm and shorting out all the decorations on that circuit. Joey sues Mr. Jones for negligence.
Please answer the following questions in approximately one paragraph each based on the courseware and what you learned in class. There is no need to research or use case law to answer these questions. 1) For purposes of liability Of land occupiers, what class of entrants is Joey considered part of? What are the rights of this class of entrants? What special rule or doctrine could potentially lead to Mr. Jones’ liability to Joey? Abnormally Dangerous Activity: An undertaking that cannot be performed safely even if reasonable care is used while performing it and for which the actor may face strict liability for any harm caused. The courts currently use a list of standards to determine whether or not an abnormally dangerous activity has been undertaken so that strict liability applies. The general rule is that if someone maintains an abnormally dangerous condition on his property or engages in an action that poses an unavoidable risk of harm to other people or property, that person may be liable for the harm caused under the theory of Strict Liability, even if he used reasonable care to prevent the harm.
3) All things considered, do you think Mr. Jones will be liable? Why or why not? Mr. Jones wants to sue Joey for shorting out all the decorations and ruining the circuit. For what tort would he do so? Will Joey be held liable? Explain. Intrusion: Entry onto another persons property without permission. Trespass to land is defined as a person’s unlawful entry onto another’s land. There are five elements which the plaintiff must show for a valid suit.
(1) There was a volitional act made by the defendant.
(2) The Defendant acted with the intent of intruding on the plaintiff’s land.
(3)There was an actual intrusion on the plaintiff’s land
(4) The plaintiff was in possession, or was entitled to immediate possession, of the land when the intrusion took place.
(5) the intrusion was caused by the defendant’s act.
Because Joey intended to intrude onto Mr. Jone’s land, Joey will be held liable for 3 trespasses in this scenario, 1 for intentionally going onto Mr. Jone’s land, 2 for shorting out all the decorations, and 3 for ruining the circuit.
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