Tort law liability is a term that describes the liability a person or entity faces for causing harm, damage, or injury to an individual. The action must be either intentional, negligent, or a violation of a statute.

What Is a Tortfeasor?

A tortfeasor is a party that commits a tort, or civil wrongdoing. The tortfeasor, if found liable, must reimburse the plaintiff for any damages. In a civil lawsuit, a tortfeasor is referred to as a defendant.

Can More than One Person Be a Tortfeasor in a Civil Case?

Yes. When two or more people or entities are potentially liable in the same tort action, it is called joint liability. This sort of liability often complicates a case because more than one person or entity could be legally responsible for the plaintiff’s harm. For example, two tortfeasors injured the plaintiff in a car accident. One defendant could pay the plaintiff the entire amount if the second defendant is financially unable to or dies.

Is Several Liability the Same as Joint Liability?

Several liability refers to each tortfeasor being held accountable for the damages that they personally caused. For example, each defendant in a case would pay the plaintiff a percentage.

What Does “Joint and Several Liability” Mean?

Multiple tortfeasors may be joint and severally liable for a plaintiff’s injuries. This form of liability allows for a plaintiff to sue each tortfeasor as if they are each wholly liable for the plaintiff’s injuries, regardless of how much of the injuries that they actually caused. The difference that separates this sort of liability from the other two options is that the tortfeasors must determine among themselves how much to pay.

Should I Contact an Attorney about a Civil Lawsuit?

Whether you are accused of being a tortfeasor or want to sue a tortfeasor, contact a personal injury attorney. The attorney will go over your options and explain how to proceed with your case.