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How confident can you be that, in the context of a torts case, your actions would be...

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kisstopher603 | Valedictorian

Posted May 7, 2013 at 1:25 AM via web

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How confident can you be that, in the context of a torts case, your actions would be considered in hindsight as those of a "reasonable person"?  

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 7, 2013 at 1:35 AM (Answer #1)

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Looking at my actions in a very generic way, I suppose that I would have to say that many juries could find that I have acted in many instances as something less than a reasonable person.  I have probably done a number of things that would not have been seen as reasonable if someone had gotten hurt as a result of what I did or did not do. 

For example, I certainly have had moments while driving that did not live up to what a reasonable person would do.  I have done things like trying to read a map while driving.  This would surely have been seen as a lack of reasonable caution if I had run into someone.  As another example, I have not always taken care of snow and ice in my driveway or on my steps.  I have simply counted on the idea that no one would come to my door or, if they did, they would hold tightly to the hand rail.  But this would probably not do as a defense in a civil case.

On the whole, these are more of isolated events than trends, but that would probably not matter.  There have clearly been times when I could have been found to have exercised less care than a reasonable person would have.

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