A more recent version of these Negligence Public Authorities notes – written by Cambridge/Bpp/College Of Law students – is available here.
The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our GDL Tort Law Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:
Negligence & Public Authorities _______________________________________________________
Public Authority Liability
? Lunney & Oliphant note public authorities are attractive targets for litigation because: o Deep pockets o Array of powers & duties opens them up to diverse negligence actions However the policy reasons against expansion include: o Depletion of public funds o Defensive performance o Interference with public administration
? Bailey & Bowman: non-justiciability & the courts' reluctance to pry into public authorities' sensitive balancing of priorities
Hill v Chief Constable of West Yorkshire (see 'General Negligence' doc) HL pointed out the public policy arguments surrounding public authority liability in tort:
? Liability might encourage defensive policing
? Tort liability was not an effective tool for ensuring competence as the police may be expected to "apply their best endeavours" per Lord Keith
? Regulatory bodies & complaints procedures more appropriate than the courts to address failures
? Diversion of public resources However Lord Keith also recognised that a higher standard of care may be applied to the police in circumstances permitting it
Human Rights & Public Authorities HRA 1998 requires that ECHR is effective:
- Vertically HRA S.6
- Horizontally - as S.6 includes courts who must make decisions compatible with HR
? Lunney & Oliphant: inconsistent adaptation of negligence law to HRA - notes that Art 6 fair trial is not breached where a claim is struck out at the prelim hearing based on the third limb of the three stage test Osman v UK
Buy the full version of these notes or essay plans and more in our GDL Tort Law Notes.