According to Popow, there are three bases for legal liability, which are tort, terms of a contract, or a statute/law. To be more exact, three types of liability exist and are distinguished by their bases:
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Tort liability presupposes the responsibility for doing any kind of harm to a person. As a rule, three types of tort liability are traditionally distinguished; Popow stresses that the following types must be kept in mind:
- Strict liability
- Unintentional acts
Any instance of causing harm unintentionally is a good example of a tort liability. A company that produces potentially dangerous goods and does not warn its customers on the possible negative outcomes breaks tort liability. For instance, a pharmaceutical company, which has recently issued a new type of medicine that causes severe side effects without warning the target customers about these effects, goes against tort liability.
Traditionally, statutory liability presupposes that the actions of an individual should be restricted by the letter of the law. Whenever the criminal law, the civil code, or even moral and ethical dimensions are mentioned, statutory liability is involved. In many ways, statutory liability means following the Constitution; however, depending on the context, statutory liability may demand following the rules of a particular mini-society (Kavaler and Spiegel 376).
The instance of following basic trade regulations can be defined as an example of a statutory liability. For example, when providing its services to a particular target audience, a company is obliged by the law to provide the customers with the proof of its legitimacy (i.e., display the license, etc.)
Contractual liability is often confused with statutory liability. As a rule, the former is based on the principles stated in a previously signed contract. While having much in common with the statutory one, contractual liability can be either written or oral, in contrast to the statutory liability, which can only exist in a written form. Moreover, the principles of a contractual liability may or may not concern the universal principles stated in the statutory law.
A bet can be viewed as an example of a contractual liability.
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Advantages and Disadvantages of Record Statement: Analysis
Another peculiar issue discussed by Popow, the phenomenon of record statement (Popow 11) deserves being studied closer. On the one hand, the advantages of a record statement are obvious; once knowing a person’s background, one will be able to define the possible issues that may emerge in the future, and be ready to prevent these issues from happening. Therefore, record statement can be seen as a means to ensure safety within particular environment.
Record statement can, on the other hand, cause major problems. There is no secret that accidents can happen, leading to the breach of liability mentioned in the record statement. However, for a healthcare service employee, the mere mentioning of a liability breach can mean the end of his/her career. In its turn, a healthcare company may be deprived of a qualified professional due to a misunderstanding.
Admittedly helping prevent accidents and hire incompetent staff, a record statement is still a very dubious concept. A record statement does not provide comments on the reasons for the possible instances of liability breach, therefore, blemishing the reputation of an otherwise perfect healthcare specialist. One could argue, though, that, for a healthcare employee, even the slightest fault is completely unacceptable, since a patient’s life often depends on the actions of a healthcare employee.
Kavaler, Florence and Allen D. Spiegel. Risk Management in health Care Institutions: A Strategic Approach. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett Publishers, 2003. Print.
Popow, Donna J. “Investigation of Cause of Loss, Liability, and Damages.” Clain Handling Principles and Practices (1st Ed.). Malvern, PA: American Institute for Chartered Property/Casualty Underwriters/Insurance Institute of America, 2006. Print.