In the backyard of P's home, D pulled a chair out form underneath P before she could sit in it.
P fell and suffered a fractured hip and other serious injuries. P instituted an action in battery.
Trial court dismissed citing that P failed to prove that D had moved the chair for the purpose of bringing about P's contact with the ground.
Trial court dismissed P's claim.
WA Supreme Court remanded for clarification about intent.
Is a party liable for battery when he is substantially certain that his act will result in harmful or offensive touching?
A party is liable for battery when he is substantially certain that his act will result in harmful or offensive touching.
In battery, it is not sufficient that the D commits the act intentionally, even though the act may cause a great risk of harm. D must know or realize to a substantial certainty that his act will bring about the contract or harmful touching.
In this case, battery will be established if D knew to a substantial certainty that P would sit where the chair had been.
The absence of intent to injure the P does not absolve the D from liability. D did not need to act with the purpose of harming the P.
Trial court needs to determine whether or not the D possessed such intent.
Battery requires D to have the intent to bring about harmful or offensive touching.
The intent requirement is satisfied if the D knows that the contact will occur or is substantially certain that the contact will occur. This intent does not have to be malicious.
It is only required that the D acts with the intent to bring about the harmful or offensive touching.
Remanded to ascertain if the D knew that the P would fall if he pulled the chair out.
Purpose wasn't present. Must see if the D had knowledge that by taking the chair out from under aunt that she would fall. Did he move the chair while she was sitting or before she started sitting? Did he move it to sit down in himself?