The Significance of John Boyd

John Boyd's ideas have been adopted as a standard tool for decision-making where effectiveness matters. He was also a hell of a fighter pilot.

Bourhill v Young

Bourhill v Young is a prime example of a proximity/remoteness Negligence case. Mrs Bourhill suffers nervous shock on hearing Mr Young negligently crash. Is she owed a duty of care? That depends on whether the kind of damage she suffered was reasonably foreseeable to Mr Young at the time of his breach of duty.

Breach of Duty in Negligence: the Fault Stage

The question at the fault stage is whether the defendant exposed others to risks of injury to person or property that a reasonable person would not have exposed them to. Where the defendant has exposed others to risks of damage that a reasonable person would not have exposed them to, we say that the defendant's conduct fell below the standard of the reasonable person.

Duty of Care: Omissions

The general rule is that there is no liability in negligence for a mere omission, i.e. for failing to confer a benefit on someone. For example, failing to shout a warning to a blind person about to walk off a cliff or failing to save a child drowning in a shallow pond.

Why Pure Economic Loss is Generally not Recoverable in Negligence

There are two fundamentally different views as to why pure economic loss is generally not actionable in negligence. These two views broadly align with the rights and loss/policy view.

Duty of Care: Pure Economic Loss Introduction

There are special restrictions at the duty in law stage where the claimant has suffered pure economic loss. The general rule is that pure economic loss is not recoverable. The most important exception to this general rule is the case of Hedley Byrne v Heller. There is also an exception flowing from White v Jones.

Duty of Care: Nervous Shock and Psychiatric Injury

The law has special duty in law restrictions where the claimant has suffered nervous shock. The distinguishing feature of these cases is how the damage is caused rather than the nature of the harm. Nervous shock cases are those where the damage is caused by psychiatric means.

Assumption of Responsibility in Tort

This is just a general introduction to the idea of assumption of responsibility as it is a regular concept when studying negligence. It is hard to pin down the concept of assumption of responsibility at a general level, but this article makes a few points.

General Tests for the Existence of a Duty of Care in Negligence

There is a vast range of issues that are dealt with as duty in law questions. Thus, any general test will inevitably be too abstract to be of any real use in deciding whether a duty in law is owed. There is no search for a workable general test, it is impossible!