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Safeguard Your Kansas City Business' Bottom Line: Be on the Watch for Business Torts

Business owners are often attentive of the importance that contracts play in the business world and are quick to seek counsel if a contract is breached. However, a sizeable segment of business-related litigation stems from what are referred to as "business torts." A "tort" is a class of civil intentional or negligent wrongs. Business torts do not include damage to property or persons, but rather target a business' intangible assets. A business that has suffered economic loss as the result of a business tort can file suit against the offending business or individual. A savvy business owner can safeguard his or her business' bottom line simply by being aware of the existence of these causes of action. Three of the most common business torts that can jeopardize a business and its economic interests are:

Tortious Interference with Prospective Business Advantage or Relationship: The purpose of this tort is to protect a business' future or potential contractual relations. In Kansas, to prove this tort, a plaintiff needs to show: (1) the existence of a business expectancy or relationship that has the likelihood of future economic benefit to the plaintiff, (2) that the defendant was aware of said expectancy or relationship, (3) that but for the conduct of the defendant that the plaintiff would have realized the expectancy or was reasonably certain to have continued the relationship, (4) the defendant's actions were intentional and without legal justification, and (5) plaintiff suffered damages that were proximately or directly the result of defendant's misconduct.

Tortious Interference with Contractual Relations: Like the previous tort, the rationale behind this cause of action is preservation of business contracts from malicious conduct by a third party. Plaintiff can recover based on this cause of action if plaintiff can prove the following elements: (1) a valid contract, (2) defendant had knowledge of said contract, (3) defendant intentionally procured the breach of said contract, (4) that defendant had no legal justification for its actions, and (5) that the plaintiff suffered damages as the result of the defendant's actions.

Unfair Competition: Unfair competition is a tort that encompasses any unfair, unlawful or fraudulent business practice, act or advertising that causes economic injury to a business. Some common examples of unfair competition include: false advertising, theft of trade secrets and trade libel. Unfair competition claims can have basis in both state and federal law. Federal claims of unfair competition typically fall in the categories of advertising, copyrights and trademarks.

If your business has a suffered a loss as the result of the wrongful act of another, contact my office today at 913-498-1911 to schedule a free and confidential consultation. I have been advising business owners on their legal rights for over two decades. As an experienced business litigation attorney I can help you protect your business' interests when it comes under attack.

Tags: Kansas business law attorney, Kansas business law lawyer

This entry was posted on Saturday, August 3rd, 2013 at 9:19 pm and is filed under Business Litigation. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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