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Norwich CC v Harvey

[1989] 1 All ER 1180

Case summary last updated at 03/01/2020 17:47 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Norwich CC v Harvey

N contracted with X for X to extend a swimming pool, including a clause that the risk of fire was purely N’s risk. X subcontracted to H whose negligence caused a fire and damage. N tried to bring a tortious claim against H. CA rejected the claim since there was no duty of care: there was no proximity (WHAT? Surely if you are working on someone’s house you should have the owners in contemplation) and it wouldn’t be fair just and reasonable to impose a duty in this scenario. The mere absence of privity of contract did not make it fair, just etc to impose a duty. In fact the exemption clauses of the main contract could be relied on by them because P had accepted the risk of fire lay with them, regardless of whether or not negligence had caused it. 

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