Law of Tort Analysis by Diagram

Assignment 3.3: Analysis by Diagram


An important step in analyzing an intentional tort case is first checking the facts against the elements of the tort, and also checking case law to see how a court might rule in the case. For this assignment, you will work with a partner to analyze the facts of a scenario to determine if defamation has occurred. You will then review a similar case and compare the facts of the scenario to the case.


Sara worked at a consulting firm for nearly 30 years as an accountant. She was due to move her office to a different floor in the building, but the office was instead given to a less senior staff person. Sara complained to her supervisor, and the next day she was fired. On the day of her firing, Sara says the firm had an armed and uniformed person stand near the elevators. Her photograph was posted in each elevator and at each reception and security desk in the building. Throughout the day, partners and employees of the firm made comments that Sara had threatened to shoot employees, had threatened the partners, and had brought a gun to work. Sara denies she made any such threats and says she has never owned a gun, let alone brought one to work. Sara has asked your firm to represent her in a defamation suit against the consulting firm she worked for.


  1. Work with your partner to analyze the scenario.
  2. In a new Microsoft Word document, prepare a table that diagrams your analysis for each element of the tort at issue. Briefly state your conclusion as to whether a cause of action exists.
  3. Read the case of Becker v. Zellner , 684 N.E.2d 1378 (1997). Search online for "Becker v. Zellner." 4. In a new Microsoft Word document, independently draft a comparison of the court case and the scenario. Answer the following questions:

         •   What are the similarities in facts of the case and the scenario?

         •   What are the differences?

    •   If Sara's case were in the same jurisdiction as the Becker  case, do you think the Beckercase is on point and authority that the court should follow?

   •   In light of the Becker case, how do think a court would rule on Sara's case?

  1. Exchange your analysis with your partner. Critique your partner's comparison based on the detail and thoroughness of the analysis. Also consider how clear, organized, grammatical, and well composed the report is. Use the Microsoft Word comments to make your notes.
  2. Return the comparison to your partner.
  3. Review the critique of your writing and revise your agreement if necessary. Preserve the comments in the document.
  4. Your investigation plan and interview questions must be one to two pages long, and your revised interview report must be two to six pages long. Both documents must be double-spaced, set in 12-point type, and framed with one-inch margins.

         •   Include your name at the top of the first page.

         •   Proofread to eliminate mechanical and grammatical errors.

  5. Save and submit your investigation plan and interview questions and your interview report showing comments using the Browse function below.


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