On behalf of Pakis, Giotes, Page & Burleson, P.C.
What Is the Definition of Tortious Interference?
The business world can be a highly competitive environment, but it is no excuse for another party to interfere with your business. Unfortunately, some Texas business owners experience sudden interruptions in their business contracts or operations that are caused by improper behavior on behalf of another party. If you find this is the case in your business affairs, you may have a case of tortious interference on your hands.
Chron explains that tortious interference is when another party takes action to obstruct or otherwise interfere with your business relationships. This kind of interference creates problems for you in carrying out your business operations. One method of interference is to deplete your workforce. A rival company may contact people that work for you and induce them to leave your company for your competitor.
Tortious interference can also break up the working relationships between companies. You may have signed a contract with another company to produce inventory for you. However, a malicious party contacts the other company and offers an incentive, such as blackmail, for the company to break the contract. Tortious interference can also occur by obstructing the efforts of a company to transport goods to a customer.
In order for tortious interference to be established, it needs to be shown that you suffered economic harm because another party interfered with your business operations. Typically, the economic harm involved in tortious interference is a deprivation of profits. If a rival company persuaded a contractor to suddenly breach a contract, you have experienced the loss of whatever that contract would have yielded you.
Some forms of tortious interference are not easy to prove. If a competitor convinced some of your workers to leave your business, the doctrine of at-will employment may make it hard to convince a court that tortious interference had taken place. Breaches of contract, however, may be easier to prove. Courts can also offer damages based on the emotional distress of having your business interfered with.
Tortious interference is a serious matter that damages the legitimate operations of businesses. Since tortious interference can happen in many different ways, do not consider this article as any substitute for the advice of a professional business law attorney. This article is only intended as general information.