Instructions: Read the following fact pattern, and answer the question. Give yourself 60 minutes to complete this exam.
Analyzing Tort Essay Exam Problems
Do not go over the time limit. We recommend that you take this exam only after you have completed your study of Negligence issues.
If necessary, review the Torts Rules of Law before starting this exam. Once you have completed the practice exam in the time allotted, then compare your answer with this Torts Sample Answer. One nine-year-old child, Kevin, runs into the street chasing a soccer ball. David, without looking over his shoulder, swerves into the other lane to avoid Kevin and in the process he hits a car, driven by Peter, that was speeding past him in the left-hand lane going in the same direction.
Peter loses control of his car, hits a telephone pole and is seriously and permanently injured. The telephone pole, owned by the local phone company TeleCo, easily snaps into two pieces and hits Kevin, who is still in the street, knocking him unconscious and resulting in permanent injuries.
TeleCo never did any testing of its poles to establish how easily the poles broke. The only factor used in manufacturing the poles was cost. The poles were made of low quality trees and were not treated in any significant manner except for a coating of tar.
No reinforcement was used on the poles.The following is a sample answer to the Torts Practice Exam. If you have not already done so, take the exam and then compare your answer to this sample. If necessary, you can also review the Torts Rules of Law for this exam. Since law school professors vary in what they consider excellent work, this answer is only presented as a sample. The injured individuals can seek damages based on a theory of negligence.
I will examine the potential liability of each party in turn. The prima facie case for negligence is established by showing a duty of reasonable care, breach of the duty, actual and proximate cause and damage. Although David may have breached a duty in not looking when changing lanes, he has a defense in the emergency doctrine. To prove negligence, Peter has the burden to prove that David had a duty to drive more carefully. One theory would be that David should drive slower than the speed limit when kids were present.
Evidence of breaking the law is automatically considered a breach of a duty, but not breaking the law doesn't necessarily establish that a breach didn't occur. All of the facts and circumstances must be considered. Since 25 MPH is a standard speed limit for residential areas where kids normally play, I don't think that David had a duty to drive slower.
David, however, probably breached a duty of care by not looking before he changed lanes. A reasonable and prudent person would naturally look before changing lanes. Here, however, David can claim two defenses. First, he can claim contributory negligence since Peter was speeding. See below for an analysis of Peter's liability. Second, David can claim the emergency doctrine. Since his swerving into the lane avoided an accident with Kevin, he was justified in making the split-second decision to swerve.
I think that under the duty of reasonable care analysis, David acted with the care of an ordinary and prudent person under the circumstances of an emergency. Therefore, David will probably not be found negligent in regard to Peter's claim. Even if he is found negligent, David's liability is limited if Peter is found to be liable for contributory negligence.
As to Kevin's claim of negligence against David, it is arguable that David's action was the cause of the injury that occurred to Kevin. Under the "but-for" standard of review, if he hadn't swerved into the other lane, he would not have sent Peter's car crashing into the phone pole. However, Kevin's claim against David probably loses on the issue of proximate cause.
Proximate cause limits the liability of David to those risks that were foreseeable. Here, I don't think that a telephone pole snapping in half and falling on top of a kid is a likely result from swerving into another lane in order to avoid the kid in the first place. It is as improbable a result as that in Palsgraf.
David is probably not liable for negligence in regard to Kevin's injuries. Both Kevin and David can state a claim against Peter for their damages as a result of Peter's negligence in driving over the speed limit. Peter is liable under the theory of negligence per se since he was over the speed limit. Breaking the law - such as posted speed limits - creates a rebuttable presumption of negligence and doesn't require further analysis. Peter can rebut the presumption of negligence by showing it was the custom to speed on that street; however, the fact that children were present would go to show that Peter had a duty of care to ignore the custom and slow down under those circumstances.
Peter can also argue contributory negligence against both David for swerving and Kevin for running into the street. While David was not judged to be negligent for, I don't think his claim for damages to his car will survive. Peter's claim of contributory negligence against David is valid since David had a duty to look before changing lanes.
Although the emergency doctrine relieves David of liability, it does not confer liability on Peter. David, or his insurance company, will probably have to pay damages on David's car.T he Law Library carries a number of resources that test your knowledge of torts. This guide provides a listing of resources of practice essay exams as well as multiple choice questions.
Review the description of each resource for more details.
Exam Study Guide
University Library Home. Law School Home.
Regent University Home. Introduction T he Law Library carries a number of resources that test your knowledge of torts.
The book includes questions organized by topic. The multiple-choice questions require students to pick the best of a list, the worst of a list, or the story that illustrates a point of doctrine most effectively. The short answers require analysis of scenarios and communication of discrete points.
The fourth edition features an expanded treatment of Restatement Third of Torts, including the work in progress at the American Law Institute on Intentional Torts to Persons. Also new to this edition, the ""Zoom Out"" lists show readers what separate torts topics have in common and how they differ from one another.
Multiple-choice questions marked Zoom Out teach these compare-and-contrast strategies using scenarios germane to the twenty-first century. Scenarios include opioid addiction, 3-D printing, pharmaceutical innovation, social media, reality TV, same-sex and opposite-sex couples, ungendered and gender-specific names for characters, and an online lodging platform that resembles Airbnb.
This study aid features an innovative method of content organization. It uses a checklist format to lead students through questions they need to ask to fully evaluate the legal problem they are trying to solve.
It also synthesizes the material in a way that most students are unable to do on their own, and assembles the different issues, presenting a clear guide to procedural analysis that students can draw upon when writing their exams.
Other study aids provide sample problems, but none offer the systematic approach to problem solving found in this book combined with concise analytical summaries of the leading issues in tort law. Calleros ISBN: With a focus on essay questions and model answers, the author helps students identify their strengths and weaknesses, plan strategies, and organize their efforts - the author addresses techniques for maximizing scores on several types of essay questions, as well as on multiple-choice and other objective questions - the author helps students understand why the typical law school essay question requires a balanced analysis with arguments for both sides, rather than identification of a clear answer - assignments and exercises facilitate active learning In addition to teaching students analysis and exam-taking skills, Law School Exams, Preparing and Writing to Win, addresses exam anxiety with a helpful, positive perspective.
The author: - helps students understand that a small degree of anxiety can serve as a productive motivator - helps students learn how to reduce anxiety to a productive level by placing exams into proper perspective, by preparing thoroughly, and by adopting stress-management techniques, such as stretching, meditation, or motivational music. Darrow-Kleinhaus' Mastering the Law School Exam is designed to provide students with a knowledgeable, reasonable, and rational voice to navigate the intricacies of law school exams.
The text offers a practical rather than theoretical approach, by including examples that show students precisely "how to do it" and "how to write it. Numerous illustrations in the context of substantive law are included to help students learn to: Fill the gap between what the professor refers to as learning to "think like a lawyer" and the actual means for doing so.
Create a successful path from note-taking, to outlining, to exam writing. Tailor individualized study programs. It answers questions students have as they begin their studies. What is a tort? Should I join a study group? It also explains and gives examples of the best methods for studying and for taking exams. It provides questions and model answers from actual law school exams. The Nutshell also provides information about the types of legal practice that are available to you when you graduate.Tort law is primarily concerned with injuries to people.
These injuries may be caused by the actions of other human persons, corporations, governmental entities, and other legal actors. Persons may be injured through direct action, such as a punch in the mouth, or through passive instrumentalities, such as guns or defective products. In answering a tort law examination the student must identity the injured persons, the torts related to these injuries, possible defendants, defenses, etc. In tort practice the lawyer must also analyze the cost effectiveness of the litigation.
Defendants identified on a torts' examination might not be sued in a real case. This checklist is designed to help analyze fact situations and to develop a written analysis that is suitable for an examination.
You should make these lists, not just run through them in your mind. Remember, brief is not just a form of underwear! Identifying the people helps to assure that you do not miss any potential parties. It is more important to identify all the parties than to exhaustively list the torts and miss a party.
This includes the injured persons who have not been named in the problem, such as family members. Every injured person is a potential plaintiff.
The key to analyzing these relationships is identifying those persons who owed a duty to an injured person. If there is no duty, there can be no tort. For those who owed a duty, determine if they arguably breached the duty, triggering a tort analysis.
This analysis is to identify employers, building owners, and others who may have breached a duty to the plaintiff through their own actions or the actions of their agents.
Was a person injured by a product? Was the product defective? Who manufactured the product, sold it, repaired it, etc.? This is usually an immunity issue, but it may also involved mistaken identify. For example, the plaintiff may mistakenly identify a physician who never had a relationship with the patient. Is there but for proximate cause? Is this a product theory? Is this substantial factor causation? Is there comparative negligence?
Assumption of risk? Misuse of a product? Try to anticipate every possible defense to the tort. Are the injuries direct or derivative consortium? Are they permanent? Are there future wage claims? Medical care costs? Pain and suffering?The accompanying exam answers are written by Bar None Review. Use of these answers is for your personal bar review preparation and law school study only.
The exam answers may not be reprinted or republished in any form without express written permission. Dina, aged sixteen, lives at home with her mother, Mary, in a state where the age of majority is eighteen. Mary is aware that Dina has recently exhibited a sometimes violent and delusionary nature diagnosed as schizophrenia and has attacked persons in the neighborhood. Mary questioned Dina about the incident, scolded her, and asked if Dina was taking her medication.
When Dina said she was, Mary did not pursue the matter. Two days after Dina confronted Paul, Dina saw him raking leaves which had fallen into the street fronting their adjoining homes. Dina got on her bicycle and rode it as rapidly as she could directly at Paul. Although Dina swerved away from Paul at the last moment, Paul reacted by diving to one side. He struck his head on the curb and suffered a severe concussion and facial injuries.
Paul has sued Dina alleging the intentional tort of assault. In order to recover, Paul must establish that Dina 1 intentionally 2 created in Paul a reasonable apprehension 3 of imminent harmful or offensive bodily contact.
There are two acts of Dina that might give rise to liability for assault. Reasonable Apprehension. She was face to face with Paul and screaming at him and making threatening gestures. These actions may alone have created an apprehension in Paul. There is no reasonable apprehension of imminent harm, and thus, this element of the tort of assault is not met.
Thus, Dina is not liable to Paul for the verbal threat. The second act of Dina which may give rise to the tort of assault is when Dina rode her bicycle at Paul. Dina of her own volition rode her bike towards Paul as fast as possible.What's Being Tested? In most law schools, the exam counts for the entire grade in a course.
Your class participation might count only if it is extraordinary. It's entirely up to the professor.
Needless to say, this puts enormous stress on students to perform, which is all the more reason to understand exactly how exams are given and what the professor is looking for.
Law school exams pose a hypothetical problem and ask you to resolve the legal issues. Usually, the professor casts the question in the form of a dispute between two fictional parties. Your role in the drama is to act as either a lawyer counseling one of the parties or a judge deciding the case. Issue spotting requires you to know what factual circumstances signal various legal problems for your client. Analysis requires you to apply the rule of law to the set of facts.
Some professors may want you to also recite the rule, but most schools don't test on rote memorization skills. After all, you can always look up the rule of law.
Professors want to test whether you know when a problem is present i. Usually, there is no right answer to the dispute. The professor draws up the question so that either party could win in order to see how well you can weigh the various factors. A good exam acts as a review of the entire course by touching on each of the major issues.
Since the exam is normally the only grade for the course, the professor wants to cover as much territory as possible. Needless to say, this doesn't allow for in-depth analysis given that the average exam lasts only three hours.
Consequently you only have time for a big picture analysis. Another way of putting it is that the writing should be wide and shallow. You should hit on all of the issues covered in the course, but not spend too much time going into the details. In the words of one professor, the best exams have the character of inspired superficiality. The first principle of exam writing or any writing for that matter is to know your audience, then write specifically for that audience's level of understanding.
Your audience is one person - the professor. Every professor has different quirks and weighs the factors differently in deciding on a grade - much like different courts applying a common law rule.The following prep test deals with the law of torts.
The 30 multiple-choice questions follow the MBE format that directs the test-taker to choose the best answer from a list of four possible answers.
Torts Essay & Answers
Under the following Bar Prep Hero practice examination, we provide a hint for each question that gives you some further insight to the answer.
In addition, we do not make you rush through the test questions under the pressure of a time limit. Instead, there is no time limit. You will use the same standards in this prep test, where it may be applicable.
The first instruction is to answer the questions according to principles of general applicability. Assume that there is no applicable statute unless the question states otherwise. You should assume, however, that survival and wrongful death statutes are applicable in questions where death actions may be applicable. In addition, you should assume that joint and several liability, with pure comparative negligence, is the relevant rule unless otherwise indicated.
We try to include a mix of questions in this prep test that generally follows what you will find in the MBE. Remember that about half of the torts questions on the official MBE will deal with the law of negligence. Some of the subjects are legal duty, the standard of care, causation, foreseeability, joint and several liability, multiple causes, and problems of proof such as applying the rule of res ipsa loquitur.
Also included are the concepts of contributory negligence, assumption of the risk, liability for agents, and generally everything related to negligence liability. The remaining half of the MBE torts examination includes considerations of intentional torts, product liability, strict liability, abnormally dangerous activities, and a variety of other tort actions. Torts and the law of personal injury is an exciting and popular practice area for attorneys.
We wish you success in mastering this subject matter as you move forward! Back to the Score page Restart Challenge Bank 0.