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Chapter

Cover Tort Law

2. Introduction to the tort of negligence  

The chapter begins by mapping and explaining the historical development of the tort of negligence, and some of the key themes underpinning the tort, before placing the discussion in the context of the modern law of negligence. The chapter then outlines the essential ingredients of a claim in negligence—a duty of care, a breach of that duty and the damage caused by that breach—before going on to explore these in practice through a close examination of the first instance judgment in X & Y v London Borough of Hounslow [2008].

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

8. Breach of duty: the standard of care  

This chapter focuses on the second of the requirements necessary to establish a claim in the tort of negligence—breach of duty. Breach occurs where a defendant has fallen below the particular standard of care demanded by the law. This is largely an objective test and is determined by comparing the actions of the defendant to those imagined to be done in the same circumstances by the so-called ‘reasonable man’. The questions to be answered are how the defendant ought to have behaved (what was the required standard of care) and how the defendant did behave (did they in fact fall below that standard).

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

14. Breach of statutory duty  

This chapter considers the tort of breach of statutory duty. Unlike the statutory duties contained in the Occupiers’ Liability Acts 1957 and 1984 or the Consumer Protection Act 1987 where liability arises directly according to the provisions of the statute itself, in a civil action in the tort of breach of statutory duty, liability arises indirectly where a statute imposes a duty but does not identify a civil remedy in the event of its breach. The tort is a combination of statute and the tort of negligence; the duty is defined by statute, while the action lies in the common law. It should be noted that while much of the case law arises in the employment context, the tort of breach of statutory duty extends beyond this.

Chapter

Cover Tort Law: Text and Materials

11. Special Liability Regimes  

Although much of the law of tort is based upon general common law principles, there are a number of situations where special liability regimes have been created. This chapter focuses on four of these special liability regimes. The first regime to be considered is employers’ liability, whose origins lie in nineteenth-century common law. Two other special regimes are then considered: the liability of occupiers to those coming onto their land (governed by the Occupiers’ Liability Acts of 1957 and 1984) and liability in respect of defective products (governed by the Consumer Protection Act 1987). In both these areas Parliament has intervened to remedy perceived failings in the common law. The final part of this chapter considers the common law action for breach of statutory duty. This differs from the action for negligence in that the source of the defendant’s duty is not the common law; rather, the claimant’s case is founded on a breach of a duty imposed on the defendant by Parliament.

Chapter

Cover Tort Law: Text and Materials

14. Privacy  

The right of privacy under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights was incorporated into English law by the Human Rights Act 1998, but English law as yet recognises no tort of invasion of privacy as such. Admittedly, a number of specific torts protect particular aspects of privacy, but this protection may be regarded as haphazard, incidental, and incomplete. Recent decisions, however, have seen substantial developments in the protection given to particular privacy interests, above all by adapting the law of breach of confidence to provide a remedy against the unauthorised disclosure of personal information. These issues are discussed in this chapter.

Book

Cover Tort Law: Text and Materials

Mark Lunney, Donal Nolan, and Ken Oliphant

Tort Law: Text and Materials brings together a selection of carefully chosen extracts from cases and materials, with extensive commentary. Each section begins with a clear overview of the law, followed by illustrative extracts from case law and from government reports and scholarly literature, which are supported by explanation and analysis. The authors start by introducing the subject, and then examine intentional interference with the person before moving on to liability for negligence. Their analysis provides an overview of negligence liability in general, and then addresses in turn breach of duty, causation and remoteness, defences to negligence, and specific duty of care issues (psychiatric illness, economic loss, omissions and acts of third parties, and public bodies). In the following chapter, the authors consider the special liability regimes for employers and occupiers, as well as product liability and breach of statutory duty. The focus then switches to nuisance and the rule in Rylands v Fletcher, defamation, and privacy, before turning to vicarious liability, and damages for personal injury and death. Finally, they explore how tort works in practice.

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

16. Invasion of privacy  

This chapter examines the nascent ‘tort’ of invasion of privacy. It first considers why no free-standing tort of invasion of privacy exists, before looking at breach of confidence—a legal concept straddling tort and equity and concerned with ‘secrets’ and judicially adapted to protect privacy by developing the new tort of misuse of private information. The chapter then asks whether developments in the law protecting privacy—particularly in the wake of the Human Rights Act 1998—threaten freedom of expression and therefore the general public’s ‘right’ to information, particularly about celebrities, including royalty and politicians.

Chapter

Cover Street on Torts

19. Breach of statutory duty  

This chapter examines how statutory obligations occasionally give rise to private actions in tort. It explains that a breach of a statutory duty will not automatically confer a right of action on anyone adversely affected by it (and that it does not necessarily ground an action for negligence either). The chapter sets out the relevant elements of the statute-based tort, noting that the claimant must prove both that he was intended by Parliament to be protected as an individual and that the protection was aimed at preventing the kind of loss he suffered. If these elements are fulfilled, he will be entitled to compensation for loss. Defences specific to this area of law are considered also.

Chapter

Cover An Introduction to Tort Law

3. Breach of Duty  

Celebrated for their conceptual clarity, titles in the Clarendon Law Series offer concise, accessible overviews of major fields of law and legal thought. This chapter discusses breach of duty. To establish breach of duty, it must be determined that there was some misbehaviour by the defendant himself. The chapter addresses the question of whether the defendant behaved reasonably. It considers factors such as foreseeability of harm objective standard, normal practice, utility of conduct, cost of prevention, conduct of others, and emergencies. It then turns to the identification of the breach.

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

2. Introduction to the tort of negligence  

The chapter begins by mapping and explaining the historical development of the tort of negligence, and some of the key themes underpinning the tort, before placing the discussion in the context of the modern law of negligence. The chapter then outlines the essential ingredients of a claim in negligence—a duty of care, a breach of that duty and the damage caused by that breach—before going on to explore these in practice through a close examination of the first instance judgment in X & Y v London Borough of Hounslow [2008].

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

8. Breach of duty: the standard of care  

This chapter focuses on breach of duty. Breach occurs where a defendant has fallen below the particular standard of care demanded by the law. This is largely an objective test and is determined by comparing the actions of the defendant to those imagined to be done in the same circumstances by the so-called ‘reasonable man’. The questions to be answered are how the defendant ought to have behaved (what was the required standard of care) and how the defendant did behave (did they in fact fall below that standard).

Chapter

Cover Tort Law

3. The Standard of Care in Negligence  

All books in this flagship series contain carefully selected substantial extracts from key cases, legislation, and academic debate, providing able students with a stand-alone resource. This chapter introduces the reader to the fault principle or negligence standard, along with its positive and negative implications. This chapter first asks. ‘What is negligence?’. It covers the standard of care and, within this, it looks at the objective standard. The chapter goes on to explore the way in which professional skill and care are assessed in the medical context. It also considers reasonable risk-taking and the absence of evidence of fault.

Chapter

Cover Casebook on Tort Law

12. Breach of statutory duty  

This chapter discusses liability for breach of statutory duty. There may be cases where a statute renders a certain activity a crime, and the law imposes an additional civil liability towards a person harmed by the act. While some statutes state this directly, most statutes make no mention of potential civil liability, but nevertheless liability may be imposed if the court believes that Parliament impliedly intended there to be a remedy. Not only are there difficulties about when a civil duty will be spelt out of a criminal or regulatory statute, but there are also problems about the role and function of the tort of statutory duty.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Tort Law

Dunnage v Randall [2016] QB 639  

Essential Cases: Tort Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Dunnage v Randall [2016] QB 639. The document also included supporting commentary from author Craig Purshouse.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Tort Law

Tomlinson v Congleton BC [2004] 1 AC 46  

Essential Cases: Tort Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Tomlinson v Congleton BC [2004] 1 AC 46. The document also included supporting commentary from author Craig Purshouse.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Tort Law

Dunnage v Randall [2016] QB 639  

Essential Cases: Tort Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Dunnage v Randall [2016] QB 639. The document also included supporting commentary from author Craig Purshouse.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Tort Law

Tomlinson v Congleton BC [2004] 1 AC 46  

Essential Cases: Tort Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in Tomlinson v Congleton BC [2004] 1 AC 46. The document also included supporting commentary from author Craig Purshouse.

Chapter

Cover Street on Torts

6. Breach of duty  

This chapter examines breach of duty in negligence. It discusses the factors that courts consider in determining whether defendants are in breach of their duties of care to claimants. In each case, these factors include the foreseeability of harm to the claimant, the appropriate standard of care owed by the defendant to the claimant, and the conduct of the defendant in comparison to the expected standard of care. This chapter suggests that the question of whether the defendant has breached a duty of care is a mixed one of law and fact and that the standard of care required of the defendant is an exclusively legal construct and based on the standard of a hypothetical reasonable person. The chapter considers also special issues involving proof of breach, most importantly in the application of the res ipsa loquitur doctrine.

Chapter

Cover An Introduction to Tort Law

13. Economic Torts  

Celebrated for their conceptual clarity, titles in the Clarendon Law Series offer concise, accessible overviews of major fields of law and legal thought. This chapter deals with economic torts. Economic torts include deceit, malicious falsehood, passing-off, inducing breach of contract, intimidation, and conspiracy. The first three involve deception: deceit is telling lies to the claimant; telling lies to a third party is malicious falsehood; misleading a competitor's customers, even bona fide, is passing-off. The other three torts all involve collaboration, whether reluctant, as a result of threats, complaisant as a result of positive incentives, or spontaneous. The chapter discusses the nature of the harm; the defendant's conduct and purpose, anti-competitive conduct; and the various ‘economic torts’ in terms of their various components: intention, conduct, and wrongfulness.

Chapter

Cover Markesinis & Deakin's Tort Law

4. Liability for Fault: Breach  

This chapter examines the principal element of the cause of action in negligence, namely breach of duty. The issue of breach of duty is concerned with whether the defendant was careless, in the sense of failing to conform to the standard of care applicable to him. The discussions cover the concept of breach of duty; the objective standard; professional and regulatory standards; updating of standards in the light of new information; the role of cost-benefit analysis and the ‘Learned Hand’ test; weighing the risk and gravity of harm against the cost of prevention; and proof of carelessness, including discussion of the res ipsa loquitur principle.