Vicarious liability—case tracker

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Vicarious liability—case tracker

Vicarious liability—case tracker

When considering liability, a claimant will be seeking to establish the fault, whether negligence or breach of statutory duty, of an identified defendant (in workplace cases, typically their employer). However, in certain circumstances, there may often be an alternative route to liability—the vicarious liability of the employer for the acts or omissions of its employee or agent.

Vicarious liability has developed steadily. Originally, the application of the doctrine was largely confined to the simple case of the employee in the course of their duties negligently causing injury to another person, often a fellow employee. The claimant was required to show that the negligence or other breach of duty (usually an act rather than an omission) was committed by an employee acting in the course of their duties. Where this is established, liability is said to be strict in the sense that there is no requirement to establish fault on the part of the employer.

Although the test of whether the negligence was committed by an employee in the course of their duties still has some relevance and application, there has been significant development in the law following the decision in Lister v Hesley Hall where the courts imposed a new test which was significantly less strict. Lister introduced the ‘close connection’ test, largely capturing cases involving deliberate assault. Stating the obvious, an assault by

Popular documents