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Thompson v Lohan (Plant Hire) Ltd

[1987] 2 All ER 631

Case summary last updated at 02/01/2020 10:31 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Thompson v Lohan (Plant Hire) Ltd

 Same clause and facts apply as in Phillips Products except that the damage was not done to the hirer (H) but to a TP who was killed and whose widow sued H. H then sought to claim from D (party who loaned them a machine + employee). However CA held that the condition was effective. This was because the question was not whether the party relying on the clause was seeking to exempt liability, but whether the victim would be excluded from compensation by it. Since, in this scenario, the victim was not prevented from recovering damages, the condition was beyond the control of the UCTA. Exemption clauses transferring liability are not subject to UCTA provided that the liability is not being transferred to the victim and the victim isn’t being deprived of a remedy. 
 
This is NOT what the Act said: it spoke of whether the defendant should be able to exempt or restrict his own liability in cases of death. Furthermore the act was not intended to be victim-centric but to protect the weaker bargaining party against exploitative terms. This is applicable here. 

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