7.1 Trespass to the Person, Land and Goods - Introduction

Welcome to the first lesson of the seventh topic in this module guide - Trespass to the Person, Land and Goods! The torts of trespass are distinct from negligence in that they involve deliberate, intentional actions. This old body of law intersects with the criminal law and more modern statutory reforms, and so a proper understanding of how it persists today is crucial.

At the end of this section, you should be comfortable in understanding the torts of trespass to the person, to land and to goods. You will appreciate the defences that may be available to defendants in this regard, and, in understanding and utilising the body of case law relevant here, be able to apply the rules to a range of factual scenarios.

The section begins by discussing the various torts relating to trespass of the person. These include battery, assault, false imprisonment, indirect trespass from Wilkinson v Downton, and harassment. For each tort, the requisite elements are discussed and demonstrated, and a discussion of possible defences is conducted. The section then moves on to discuss trespass to land, defining the four elements of the tort and further rules and particularities surrounding this tort, before again a discussion of available defences is provided. Finally, the trespass to goods is discussed, with the elements and defences explored within the applicable case law.

Goals for this section:

  • To understand the law relating to trespass.

Objectives for this section:

  • To appreciate and be able to apply the rules relating to battery, assault, false imprisonment, indirect trespass and harassment.
  • To be able to deal with the law surround the trespass to land.
  • To be able to apply the law to factual scenarios relating to the trespass to goods.
  • To understand what available defences there are for torts of trespass.

Start the Lecture

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Problem Questions

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Hands on Examples