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Russo v. White

From lawbrain.com

Russo v. White, 400 SE 2d 160 (1991), was a torts case that looks at the elements necessary to establish a viable intentional infliction of emotional distress case.

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Summary of Case Facts

Plaintiff is a single mother who goes on one date with the defendant and then he begins to call incessantly. Defendant was previously convicted of “causing a telephone to ring with the intent to annoy,” a misdemeanor. She ultimately alleged to have suffered emotional distress as a result of the phone calls, but no documented bodily harm.


Can the plaintiff recover damages for emotional distress for incessant calling by the defendant?

Holding and Law

No. The court applied the four part Womack test to determine whether emotional distress damages were appropriate: 1.)conduct must be intentional or reckless 2.)conduct was outrageous & intolerable…must offend indecency & morality 3.)must be a causal connection 4.)emotional distress must be severe

Applied here, although parts 1 and 3 of the Wommack test were met, the case doesn’t rise to the level of extreme emotional distress nor could the phone class be classified

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