The Independent Tort Doctrine.

AuthorMilton, Dave

"Post-Tiara: Contracts Are Still King," one of the featured articles in the July/August 2021 issue of The Florida Bar Journal, was well-researched, with an easy-to-follow argument. Legal writing of this caliber is a goal of mine. The article, however, should not be considered as an undisputed summary of the current state of the law regarding the independent tort doctrine; instead, the article argues exclusively from the standpoint of defendants' interests.

The most significant evidence of the article's predisposition is that the article encourages trial courts to apply the independent tort doctrine on a motion to dismiss. For starters, Rule 1.140(b) does not identify the independent tort doctrine as a basis for a motion to dismiss; granted, Rule 1.110(d) does permit litigants to move to dismiss based on an affirmative defense, but only if the basis for the defense appears on the face of the pleading. Because there is a multitude of questions to be answered before a trial court can conclude that the independent tort doctrine applies and that there are no exceptions, it is (to put it mildly) unlikely that the basis for the defense will appear within the four corners of the complaint.

To preempt those questions, the...

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