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Dupler v. Seubert

    Brief Fact Summary.

    When Seubert and Peterson had a discussion regarding whether Dupler would be fired or resign, Dupler sued for false imprisonment.

    Synopsis of Rule of Law.

    In order to succeed on a false imprisonment claim, a plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant confined the plaintiff with boundaries that were set by the defendant, and that the plaintiff was aware of or harmed by the confinement.

    Facts.

    Dupler worked for Peterson and Seubert. When Seubert asked Dupler to accompany her to Peterson’s office, Peterson and Seubert informed Dupler that she could no longer work for the company. When Seubert and Peterson had a discussion regarding whether Dupler would be fired or resign, Dupler sued for false imprisonment. Dupler testified that she tried to leave the room several times but Seubert yelled at Dupler to sit down and Peterson blocked the door. The jury found for Dupler.

    Issue.

    What must a plaintiff demonstrate in order to support a false imprisonment claim?

    Held.

    Yes. The judgment of the trial court is affirmed. Dupler’s testimony contained sufficient evidence to support the defendant’s threatening conduct.

    Discussion.

    In order to succeed on a false imprisonment claim, a plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant confined the plaintiff with boundaries that were set by the defendant, and that the plaintiff was aware of or harmed by the confinement. Confinement can be constituted by physical force or the express or implied threat of physical force.


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