Spivey v. Battaglia
Supreme Court FL - 1972
- D teasingly put arms around P in lunch room at work. D knew P to be very shy.
- P suffered a sharp pain in the back of the neck and ear. P ended up paralyzed on the left side of her face.
- P sued D for negligence, and assault and battery. Trial court dismissed the assault and battery charge due to SOL reasons.
- Trial court dismissed through summary judgment P's claim for negligence.
- FL district court affirmed.
- FL Supreme Court found for P, reversed and remanded.
- Is a party who acts with knowledge and substantial certainty that a particular result will follow liable for all results flowing from his act regardless of how unforeseeable or unreasonable?
- A party who acts with knowledge and substantial certainty that a particular result will follow is liable for all results flowing from his act regardless of how unforeseeable or unreasonable.
- Assault and battery is not negligence.
- Assault and battery is intentional while negligence connotes an unintentional act.
- Knowledge and appreciation of a risk, short of substantial certainty is not the equivalent of intent. It is unintentional and qualifies as negligence.
- A D who has the requisite intent for an intentional tort is liable for all injuries or harms that flow from his actions (no matter how remote or unreasonable).
- In an action based on negligence, the D is only liable for those harms that are reasonably foreseeable.
- P wanted this action to be negligence, not assault and battery.
- Court doesn't think it's fair to let the D go unscathed.