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Henderson v Dorset University NHS Trust [2016] EWHC 3275

By Oxbridge Law TeamUpdated 07/01/2024 20:41

Judgement for the case Henderson v Dorset University NHS Trust

Table Of Contents


  • The claimant's conviction served as conclusive evidence that she experienced a mental abnormality, leading to her mental responsibility being significantly impaired under section 2 of the Homicide Act 1957.

  • The sentencing judge's statements were correctly understood to suggest that the claimant had a reduced level of personal responsibility.

  • Claims were dismissed.


  • The claimant, Ms. Henderson, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, fatally stabbed her mother due to the defendant's breaches of duty in failing to respond appropriately to her deteriorating mental condition.

  • Both parties agreed that the tragic incident would not have occurred if the defendant had fulfilled their duty adequately.

  • The claimant initiated a negligence lawsuit seeking general damages under various categories, special damages, and compensation for future losses.

  • The defendant argued that all claims should be rejected on grounds of illegality or public policy.


  • This case underscores the complexities of the defence of illegality and the need for a nuanced approach when determining its applicability.

  • It highlights the importance of considering the individual circumstances of each case to ensure a fair and just outcome in negligence claims involving individuals with mental health issues.

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