TORT IN SPORTS LAW⚖⚽



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Simply, Sports law refers to the body of laws, regulations and judicial decisions that govern sports and athletes.
Sports law is an inclusive legal topic. However, Torts in Sports is the res herein.

Tort Law

Conduct that harms other people or their property is generally called a tort.  It is a private wrong against a person for which the person may recover damages.

From the foregoing it is inferred  that *Tort in Sports Law* refers to conduct or wrong against a person in sporting and athletes with which damages may be recovered, such as assault, battery, conversion, tort of negligence and tort of strict liability. Tort principles in sports law extends to players, spectators, official or private persons affected by actions or negligence of others.

Generally, a person who suffers a sportsrelated injury may recover for medical expenses and other losses if the injury was caused by the Negligence of another party.

EXCUSABLES.

1. *Volenti non fit iniuria (or injuria)* (Latin: "to a willing person, injury is not done"). 🤷🏽‍♂
A defence in tort. It is a common law doctrine which states that if someone willingly takes a risk they are not able to bring a claim against the other party in tort or delict. _For instance, Ronaldo cannot recover damages for battery, if he contracts an head injury from Puyol while they both tried to nod a ball at the same time._ However, does this defence apply to Suarez biting Ivanovic? Read on.👇🏽

GENERAL RULE

The consent or 'leave and licence' will justify many acts which would otherwise be assaults. Further, the legal burden of prove of lack of consent is on the plaintiff *(Christopherson v. Bare)*.
This defence was successfully applied in
*Hall v. Brooklands auto racing Club* (Applicability of Volenti non fit injuria is successful)
This is a classic case, where two spectators were killed as a result of a racing car crashing into the crowd. The court gave its judgement on the fore mentioned doctrine, held that there was no liability as the spectators have consented to the risks of watching the game while purchasing the tickets

However, *Consent* will not make acts which are criminal, unreasonable or  breach of peace or unwarrantably dangerous justifiable or lawful. Hence in,
*Condone v. Basi * (Applicability of Volenti non fit injuria is unsuccessful)
In this case, a footballer was held liable for breaking his opponents leg in a tackle. Courts held that in this case the defence would be unsuccessful as every player is under a duty to take reasonable care of the other players in the field. Hence, the defendant can be sued for causing injuries to the plaintiff.

Summarily, tort exist in sports law and volenti non fit injuria is one of the defences.
However, regardless of consent where an act is unreasonably harmful beyond the degree premeditated in sports, the defendant will be liable.
Hence, Suarez's bite on Ivanovic is actionable.🧛‍♀️👨‍⚖

Interesting case in the res: Day v. Ouachita Parish School Board et al. (2002). Read up.👆🏼

Watch out for PRODUCT LIABILITY IN SPORTS LAW

Written By:
Olufowose Samuel.(Holuforworshe, AAUA).

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