Florida law protects individuals and businesses that have an existing or prospective business relationship or contract that a third party interferes with. For example, Florida tortious interference civil litigation claim would protect a property owner in the negotiation stage of selling a piece of real estate from having a third party rival, or competitor, intentionally lure the buyer away from the deal.
If you have experienced economic damage of this sort, Florida law provides a cause of action for you called tortious (or wrongful) interference with an advantageous business relationship (or contract).
In Florida, to establish a cause of action for tortious interference, a plaintiff must show all of the following:
- the plaintiff had a business relationship or contract with a third person or business,
- the defendant knew about the relationship or contract,
- the defendant intentionally acted in a way that would cause the relationship to go bad or to end,
- the relationship went bad or ended, and
- the plaintiff suffered economic damages as a result
The law allows you an award for the damages you incurred in a tortious interference case, including lost profits you would have received had the relationship or contract not ended, damages for partially completed work if you performed under the prospect of the relationship or contract, and even damage to your professional reputation if, for example, the tortious interference involved a defamatory statement.
The law does allow for some healthy competition. A third party competitor who, for example, offers a prospective employee of yours a higher salary and better benefits probably would not rise to the level of tortious interference. The law aims to strike a balance between healthy competition and intentional sabotage. It is for this reason that it is ever important to hire an experienced business law and business litigation attorney to review your case and determine what potential damages may be available to you.
If you have any questions about Florida tortious interference claims in civil litigation or would like more information about Florida business law, please contact us today and schedule a consultation with one of our experienced business law attorneys.