John M. Kirby
Recent Case -- Infliction of Emotional Distress
In a recent case, a federal court in the Eastern District of North Carolina rejected a claim for emotional distress. In this case, the plaintiff had a contract with Orkin for termite inspections.Orkin repeatedly told him that he did not have termites. He alleged that he in fact had termites, resulting in extensive damage to the home and also emotional distress. The federal court dismissed the claim for emotional distress. The court held that a claim for breach of contract ordinarily does not support a claim for emotional distress. Further, the plaintiff did not have a tort (or "negligence") claim because a breach of contract ordinarily does not give rise to a tort action. Riggs v. Orkin, Inc. (2011).