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Chapter

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.