What is foreign Tort?

A ‘foreign tort’ means a tort which is committed abroad i.e., a tort, the cause of action regarding which arises abroad. Foreign torts can be classified in two categories:

(i) Torts to reality: No action will lie in England for any trespass or other tort committed in respect of land situated out of England, even though the wrongdoer is a British subject and resident in Britain. The same rule applies to India.

(ii) A personal tort: Where, however, the tort is one committed with respect to movable property, or against the person of the plaintiff, an action of tort will lie in England although the cause of action has arisen abroad.

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There are several types of foreign torts, including negligence, defamation, product liability, and intentional torts such as assault and battery. Foreign torts can be committed by individuals, companies, or governments, and they can have serious consequences for the victim.

It should be noted that no action will lie in England for an act committed in a foreign country if it either was lawful by the law of that country at the time of its commission or was excusable, or was subsequently ligitimatized by virtue of expost facto legislation in such country.

Though the act complained of should be wrongful both by the law of England and by the law of the country where it was committed, yet it is not necessary that it should involve liability to civil proceedings in the foreign country. Unless the act was innocent or justificable by the
law of the foreign country, it was immaterial to consider what the remedy might be by the law of that country.

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Essential Ingredients of a Foreign Tort: In order that an action should be for a tort committed out of England, the following conditions must be fulfilled :

(i) The act complained of must be unlawful in the place where it was committed.

(ii) It is not necessary that the wrong should have been actionable when committed. It is sufficient if it was unlawful.

(iii) The act complained of must not be tort of purely local nature, such as trespass or ouster from land, or a nuisance affecting hereditament.

(iv) The act complained of must be of a kind which would have been actionable had it been done in England. The law which will be applied is the law of England and not the law of the place where the tort was committed.

Foreign tort, also known as a tort committed abroad, refers to an unlawful act or omission that causes harm or injury to a person or their property in a foreign country. In other words, a foreign tort is a civil wrong committed in one country that causes harm or injury to an individual in another country.

One of the primary challenges with foreign torts is determining which jurisdiction’s laws apply. This can depend on several factors, including where the tort was committed, where the victim resides, and where the defendant is located. In some cases, the laws of multiple jurisdictions may apply, which can make it difficult to determine which court has jurisdiction over the case.

Another challenge with foreign torts is enforcing judgments across borders. In many cases, a judgment obtained in one country may not be recognized or enforceable in another country. This can make it difficult for victims to obtain compensation for their injuries or damages.

To address these challenges, many countries have entered into treaties and conventions to govern the resolution of foreign tort claims. For example, the Hague Convention on the Law Applicable to Traffic Accidents establishes rules for determining which country’s laws apply in cases involving traffic accidents that occur in a foreign country.

In conclusion, foreign torts can be complex and challenging to navigate. If you believe you have been the victim of a foreign tort, it is important to seek the advice of an experienced attorney who can help you understand your legal options and navigate the complex legal landscape involved in resolving these types of claims.

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