Harris v. Jones
Court of Appeals MD - 1977
- P worked for D at GM plant. P claimed that D was aware of P's speech impediment and his sensitivity to it. D constantly imitated P's stuttering and ridiculed him in front of other workers.
- P claimed these actions made him very nervous and worsened his impediment.
- P sued D for IIED.
- Special Appeals Court of MD reversed, found for D.
- MD COA affirmed, found for D.
- In order to recover damages for IIED, is it required that the P suffer a severe emotional response to the D's conduct?
- In order to recover damages for IIED, it is required that the P suffer a severe emotional response to the D's conduct.
- The elements of IIED…
- The conduct must be intentional or reckless
- The conduct must be extreme and outrageous.
- There must be a causal connection between the wrongful conduct and the emotional distress
- The emotional distress must be severe
- Conduct that is extreme and outrageous is one that goes beyond all bounds of decency and should not be tolerated by society. (based upon community standards and the circumstances of each case)
- The conduct was intentional, but there is not sufficient evidence to prove that P suffered severe emotional distress.
- The mere worsening of P's impediment is not evidence of severe emotional distress.
- The conduct is extreme and outrageous since D knew of P's sensitivity.
- There must be a causal connection between the extreme conduct and the emotional distress suffered.
- Prof thinks all conduct is outrageous.