Personal Injury in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Anns v Merton London Borough Council
    • House of Lords
    • 12 Mayo 1977

    First one has to ask whether, as between the alleged wrongdoer and the person who has suffered damage there is a sufficient relationship of proximity or neighbourhood such that, in the reasonable contemplation of the former, carelessness on his part may be likely to cause damage to the latter—in which case a prima facie duty of care arises.

  • McLoughlin v O'Brian
    • House of Lords
    • 06 Mayo 1982

    The common law gives no damages for the emotional distress which any normal person experiences when someone he loves is killed or injured. Yet an anxiety neurosis or a reactive depression may be recognisable psychiatric illnesses, with or without psychosomatic symptoms. So, the first hurdle which a plaintiff claiming damages of the kind in question must surmount is to establish that he is suffering, not merely grief, distress or any other normal emotion, but a positive psychiatric illness.

  • Cartledge v E. Jopling & Sons Ltd
    • House of Lords
    • 17 Enero 1963

    It is now too late for the courts to question or modify the rules that a cause of action accrues as soon as a wrongful act has caused personal injury beyond what can be regarded as negligible, even when that injury is unknown to and cannot be discovered by the sufferer; and that further injury arising from the same act at a later date does not give rise to a further cause of action.

  • Page v Smith
    • House of Lords
    • 11 Mayo 1995

    But it is the same test in both cases, with different applications. There is no justification for regarding physical and psychiatric injury as different "kinds" of injury. Once it is established that the defendant is under a duty of care to avoid causing personal injury to the plaintiff, it matters not whether the injury in fact sustained is physical, psychiatric or both.

  • M'Alister or Donoghue (Pauper) v Stevenson
    • House of Lords
    • 26 Mayo 1932

    You must take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably foresee would be likely to injure your neighbour. The answer seems to be persons who are so closely and directly affected by my act that I ought reasonably to have them in contemplation as being so affected when I am directing my mind to the acts or omissions which are called in question.

  • Anns v Merton London Borough Council
    • House of Lords
    • 12 Mayo 1977

    In my opinion they may also include damage to the dwelling-house itself; for the whole purpose of the byelaws in requiring foundations to be of certain standard is to prevent damage arising from weakness of the foundations which is certain to endanger the health or safety of occupants.

  • John v MGN Ltd
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 12 Diciembre 1995

    In assessing the appropriate damages for injury to reputation the most important factor is the gravity of the libel; the more closely it touches the plaintiff's personal integrity, professional reputation, honour, courage, loyalty and the core attributes of his personality, the more serious it is likely to be. The extent of publication is also very relevant: a libel published to millions has a greater potential to cause damage than a libel published to a handful of people.

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