Harrison v. Gore

660 So.2d 563

 

RULE:

Liberative prescription runs against all persons unless exception is established by law.

FACTS:

Plaintiff student filed suit against defendants, coach, school and others, alleging sexual harassment and molestation of a student by an instructor at school. The District Court sustained the exceptions of prescription brought by the coach, school and others. The student challenged the judgment. The student did not commence her action until eight years after the last tortious act alleged in the petition. The trial court held that her action was time-barred. The student argued that the trial court erred in failing to apply the 10-year contractual prescriptive period to her claim and in failing to apply the jurisdictional concept of contra non valentem to suspend the running of prescription.

ISSUE:

Did the district court err in ruling a student's sexual harassment and molestation suit against her coach, school and others, was time barred because it was commenced 8 years after the last act alleged in the petition?

ANSWER:

No.

CONCLUSION:

The court found that the trial court committed no error in applying the prescriptive period of one year. The one year period was specific legislation regulating torts. It applied even to several situations where the parties were bound by contract, but the wrong was essentially delictual. Thus the delictual prescriptive period had to be applied to torts claims unless the cause of action was clearly shown to arise from a contract. The harm alleged in the instant petition, sexual harassment and molestation of a student by an instructor at school, was a tort.

The court affirmed the judgment of the trial court in favor of the coach, school and others in the student's action for sexual harassment and molestation. 

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