The following Dispute Resolution practice note Produced in partnership with Aileen McErlean of Hardwicke Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
In reality, many claims are ‘defended’ on the basis that the defendant either did not owe the claimant a duty, or there was no breach of duty or there was a break in the chain of causation.
In each of those cases, the claimant has failed to establish that the defendant is prima facie liable.
This Practice Note considers the defences, which may exculpate a defendant from liability where liability has prima facie been established.
For guidance on limitation defences in tort claims, see the Practice Notes:
Limitation—professional negligence claims—Date of accrual in tort
Section 1(1) of the Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945 (LR(CN)A 1945) provides that where a claimant suffers damage partly as result of their own fault and partly as a result of the fault of the defendant, the court shall reduce the claimant’s damages to such an extent as it thinks just and equitable. Where the fault of both the claimant and the defendant contributed to the damage, the court must apportion the damage between the parties.
Although most often invoked in negligence claims, contributory negligence is also available as a defence in claims for:
breach of statutory duty (Caswell v Powell Duffryn)
nuisance on a highway (Trevitt v Lee). It has been assumed to be a defence
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Brexit: The UK's departure from the EU on exit day ie Friday 31 January 2020 has implications for practitioners dealing with provisions in the CPR relevant to cross border matters, including CPR 5.4C (discussed below). For guidance on the impact of Brexit on the CPR, see Cross border
What is 'discontinuance'?Discontinuance is the means by which a claimant can bring all or part of the proceedings it has instigated to an end.A claimant has a right to discontinue all or part of a claim at any time.Where proceedings are brought to an end without an order or judgment from a court, eg
The Third EditionThe third edition of the Standard Commercial Property Conditions was published on 27 April 2017. It is an update to Standard Commercial Property Conditions (Second Edition) (the Second Edition), which was published in June 2004. It is intended to reflect the changes in law and
IntroductionA defendant may decide to make a submission of no case to answer after the claimant has indicated that it has closed its case and before the defendant calls any evidence. It is only done where the defendant is extremely confident that the claimant has not presented the court with
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