July 18, 2012 Articles

Intentional Spoliation: No Evidence, No Tort, No Problem?

Every jurisdiction should punish intentional and malicious conduct directly, especially where such conduct is aimed toward circumventing the search for truth.

By Joseph C. Sullivan

“One who intentionally causes injury to another is subject to liability to the other for that injury, if his conduct is generally culpable and not justifiable under the circumstances.” Restatement (Second) of Torts § 870 (1977). This Restatement section is powerful because it manages to encapsulate, in fewer than 30 words, one of the most fundamental concepts of our legal system, namely that acts committed intentionally with the purpose to cause harm should be properly punished when harm does indeed result. As elementary as this concept may seem, a vast majority of states simply refuses to recognize this principle when it comes to the intentional spoliation of evidence.

Premium Content For:
  • Litigation Section
Join - Now