Malice: Although in tort if an act is lawful, it remains lawful, hence permitted, regardless of the intention of the defendant. However in certain torts where malice is relevant such as defamation or nuisance, malice can void a lawful act into unlawful. For example, a house owner is allowed to play music in his house, but if the music is so loud generally that it causes a nuisance to his neighbours, then the lawful act of the house owner (playing music) would be considered as unlawful. An act which is considered unlawful and driven by malice can also increase the total damages the claimant can be awarded.
Silver Fox Farm Ltd v Emmett (1936)
In Silver Fox Farm Ltd v Emmett (1936) the claimant and the defendants had their farming lands nearby. When a dispute ensued between them the defendant started to fire guns from his land with the intention to scare the breeding foxes (causing the foxes to abort). The claimant sued for losses and won.