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Spring v Guardian Assurance

[1995] 2 AC 296

Case summary last updated at 17/01/2020 20:37 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Spring v Guardian Assurance

P was made redundant by D, who, through regulatory bodies, made false accusations that P was dishonest, which prevented P from obtaining employment. HL held that a duty to take care arises upon an assumption or undertaking of responsibility by the defendant towards the plaintiff, coupled with reliance by the plaintiff on the exercise by the defendant of due care and skill. Specifically, an employer who provides a reference in respect of one of his employees to a prospective future employer will ordinarily owe a duty of care to his employee in respect of the preparation of the reference. Note that by using negligence for cases of negligent misstatement, the courts are providing a bypass around libel. 

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