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Cover Markesinis & Deakin's Tort Law

Simon Deakin and Zoe Adams

Markesinis and Deakin’s Tort Law, now in its 8th edition, provides a general overview of the law and discussion of the academic debates on all major topics, highlighting the relationship between the common law, legislation, and judicial policy. In addition, the book provides a variety of comparative and economic perspectives on the law of tort and its likely development, always placing the subject in its socio-economic context, thereby giving students a deep understanding of tort law. The book is composed of eight parts. Part I starts by setting the scene, Part II looks at the tort of negligence. Part III turns to special forms of negligence. This is followed by Part IV which examines interference with the person. Part V turns to intentional interferences with economic interests. The next part looks at stricter forms of liability. Part VII examines the protection of human dignity which includes looking at defamation and injurious falsehood, and human privacy. The last part looks at defences and remedies.

Chapter

Cover Tort Law: Text and Materials

4. Breach of Duty  

This chapter begins by looking at the key cases in which the idea of negligence as conduct falling below the standard of the reasonable person was judicially elaborated. It then discusses reasonable care; the utility of the defendant's conduct; the ‘objective’ nature of the standard of care; the relevance of ‘common practice’ in setting that standard; and the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur (‘the thing speaks for itself’).

Chapter

Cover An Introduction to Tort Law

5. Strict Liability  

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 the issue of strict liability. While strict liability is rare at common law, it is relatively common by statute. Sometimes the enactment imposes liability quite explicitly, but often it imposes a duty or creates an offence instead. The chapter addresses the question of when the courts will hold that Parliament has implicitly affected civil liability, or, to put it another way, when the will courts impose liability on the ground that the defendant's conduct contravened a statute which does not mention civil liability at all. Statutory offences, statutory duties, and remoteness are also discussed.

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Cover Lunney & Oliphant's Tort Law

4. Breach of Duty  

Donal Nolan and Ken Oliphant

This chapter begins by looking at the key cases in which the idea of negligence as conduct falling below the standard of the reasonable person was judicially elaborated. It then discusses what it means to exercise reasonable care, looking at relevant considerations such as the gravity of potential harm, the cost of precautions and the utility of the defendant’s conduct. It is explained that negligence is judged from the defendant’s standpoint but according to an ‘objective’ standard of care. The chapter concludes by considering the relevance of ‘common practice’ in setting the standard of care, and the doctrine of res ipsa loquitur (‘the thing speaks for itself’).

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Cover Markesinis & Deakin's Tort Law

11. Interference with Chattels  

This chapter discusses trespass to goods, conversion, and negligence. The present law of trespass to chattels is governed by the Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977, which introduces a collective term ‘wrongful interference with goods’ to cover trespass, conversion, negligence, and any other tort resulting in damage to goods or to an interest in goods. The Act abolishes the tort of detinue, but otherwise has little or no impact on the principles of liability developed by the common law: thus, the nomenclature and substantive scope of the common law claims remain significant to this day in understanding the legal rules in this area.

Chapter

Cover Casebook on Tort Law

3. Special duty problems: omissions and acts of third parties  

This chapter discusses the problem of when a duty of care arises in respect of negligent omissions, or for the actions of a third party. The common law takes the view that it would be too great a burden to impose liability upon a person for a mere omission, or for the actions of others. Despite this, duties can in fact be imposed in various ways, all of which focus on the reliance of the claimant upon the defendant. This can come about either by the previous conduct of the defendant, which induces reliance by the claimant that the defendant will continue to act in that way, or by reliance which comes out of a relationship of dependence between the parties. As regards third parties, a duty may arise where the defendant has control over or responsibility for the third party’s actions.

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Cover Casebook on Tort Law

5. Special duty problems: public bodies  

Public bodies have extensive powers to act for the public benefit but often have limited resources. Difficult decisions have to be made, and if those decisions are wholly unreasonable they may be corrected by judicial review; that is, by public law remedies. A more difficult question is whether failure by a public body provides a private right of action to someone harmed (or not benefited) by the decision. While the general principles of duty of care apply (that is, proximity and whether it is fair and just to impose liability), there are several limitations on the liability of public bodies in negligence. This chapter first discusses the special common law principles applicable to the exercise of discretion by public bodies. It then considers specific problematic areas, including the difficulties involved in establishing duties of care by the emergency services before examining the effect of the Human Rights Act 1998 in establishing obligations owed directly by the state.

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Cover Tort Law

15. Privacy  

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 focuses on the emergence of a new action to protect privacy under the Human Rights Act 1998, with particular reference to unjustified publication of private information. It begins by considering whether privacy is a protected interest at common law and whether privacy must be recognized and given protection through the law of tort. It then examines the tools which have been used in the partial absorption of privacy as a protected interest in common law, citing the provisions of the Human Rights Act 1998 and Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The controversies surrounding disclosure of private information and the power of injunctions are also considered, along with the issue of intrusion as an invasion of privacy.

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Cover Tort Law Directions

10. Product liability  

Without assuming prior legal knowledge, books in the Directions series introduce and guide readers through key points of law and legal debate. Questions, diagrams, and exercises help readers to engage fully with each subject and check their understanding as they progress. Manufacturers and producers are liable for personal injury or damage to property caused by a defective product. The claimant will not only recover in contract for personal injury and property damage caused by the defective product, but he will also be compensated for the cost of replacing the product itself. The Consumer Protection Act 1987 involves a strict liability regime for defective products on a variety of potential defendants. This chapter discusses the limitations of the tort system in providing compensation to a victim of harm caused by a defective product, and analyses the scope and limitations of the Consumer Protection Act 1987.

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Cover Tort Law Directions

7. Negligence: occupiers’ liability  

Without assuming prior legal knowledge, books in the Directions series introduce and guide readers through key points of law and legal debate. Questions, diagrams, and exercises help readers to engage fully with each subject and check their understanding as they progress. While tort law is largely based on case law developed by judges through the common law, the liability of occupiers for the injuries suffered by those on their premises is governed by two statutes: the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 and the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1984. The chapter explains the scope of an occupier’s liability and how it relates to other aspects of negligence, considers the duty of care owed by occupiers to lawful visitors under the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957, discusses the duty of care owed by occupiers to trespassers under the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1984 and how it relates to the previous common law duty of care.

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Cover Casebook on Tort Law

14. Invasion of privacy  

This chapter discusses different aspects of privacy. It shows that there is no general common law right to protection from invasion of privacy (the so-called ‘right to be let alone’), but that limitation has been largely subverted by the new law in the second section on the protection of personal information and the reasonable expectation of privacy that has developed significantly in recent years. This shows the potential power of the Human Rights Act 1998 and the European Convention on Human Rights, and is the subject of considerable controversy, especially in relation to the protection of celebrity privacy. The final section considers remedies in privacy cases.

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Cover Tort Law Concentrate

11. Intentional torts  

This chapter discusses both common law and statute in relation to the torts of trespass to the person: battery, assault, and false imprisonment. These torts have three common characteristics: they are the result of intentional actions, take the form of direct harm, and are actionable per se, that is, without proof of damage. An additional intentional tort is derived from Wilkinson v Downton (1897), the wilful infliction of physical harm upon the claimant by indirect means. This category of intentional harm is also augmented by the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. Defences to the intentional torts are also discussed.

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Cover Tort Law Concentrate

13. Occupiers’ liability  

This chapter discusses the law on occupiers’ liability, a form of negligence liability which was governed previously by the common law and now by statute law. The key statutes are the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 which governs duty to lawful visitors and the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1984, regarding non-visitors, or trespassers. In determining to whom the duty is owed, it is necessary to identify the status of the entrant onto land. To determine who owes the duty as occupier, the main criterion is control of the land. Exclusion of liability and defences are included.

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Cover Tort Law Concentrate

10. Product liability  

This chapter discusses the law on product liability. Common law product liability is based upon the law of negligence. Beginning with the narrow ratio in Donoghue v Stevenson (1932), it further developed the concept of intermediate examination in Grant v Australian Knitting Mills (1936). The relevant statute is the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (CPA 1987), passed in response to a European Union Directive. This introduces strict liability, when a defective product causes damage. The CPA 19876 establishes a hierarchy of possible defendants beginning with the producer. Defences under the CPA 1987 include the ‘development risks’ defence to protect scientific and technical innovation. If damage relates to quality or value, the only remedy will be in contract.

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Cover Tort Law Concentrate

9. Employers’ liability and vicarious liability  

This chapter discusses both common law and statute on employers’ liability and vicarious liability. Employers’ liability is concerned with the employer’s personal, non-delegable duty in respect of the physical and psychological safety of his employees. This was established in Wilsons and Clyde Coal v English (1938) and is reinforced by the statutory requirement that employers have compulsory insurance. Vicarious liability involves the employer being liable to a third party for the tort of his employee. This must occur in the course of employment, a concept which was redefined in Lister v Hesley Hall (2002). The employment relationship has been re-examined in the light of institutional child abuse cases.

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Cover Tort Law Concentrate

5. Psychiatric injury  

This chapter discusses the law on psychiatric injury. Psychiatric injury which is not derived from physical injury is a type of damage which is not always recoverable in negligence. It is an aspect of duty of care. The range of allowable actions has evolved through developments of control mechanisms in the common law, often policy-based. The legal distinction between the primary and secondary victim is explored, as are more atypical situations. The four key cases are McLoughlin v O’Brian (1983), Alcock v Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police (1991), Page v Smith (1995), and White v Chief Constable of the South Yorkshire Police (1999).