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Local Authority Liability Sixth edition

Provides a comprehensive survey of the legal liability of local authorities
Print + Online
In Stock
ISBN/ISSN: 9781784731007

Product description

Why you should buy Local Authority Liability

This well-established and popular work provides a comprehensive survey of the legal liabilities of local authorities, written by a team of specialists in local authority liability claims.

It comprises an invaluable overview of the nature and extent of the liability of local authorities, together with specialist chapters on the core areas of activity including education, social services, occupier's liability, employer's liability, highways, environmental damage and trees.

This new edition has been extensively revised and updated to take account of the latest developments, including:

  • the extent of the common law duty of care owed by police to victims of crime and duties under the Human Rights Act 1998 (Michael v Chief Constable of South Wales Police), and the duty of care owed by local authorities where performing statutory powers (Furnell v Flaherty
  • vicarious liability in abuse cases (JGE v Trustees of Portsmouth RC Diocesan Trust) and whether local authorities owe a non-delegable duty of care to children in foster care (NA v Nottinghamshire County Council
  • the development of the non-delegable duty owed by schools (Woodland v Essex County Council) and the duty of schools for activities away from school (Wilkins-Shaw v Fuller
  • the requirement of notice of disrepair in cases of statutory covenants (Edwards v Kumarasamy) and various cases on the duty owed by occupiers and those running activities 
  • coverage of various cases on the Workplace Regulations and the implication of section 69 of the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 
  • the latest case law dealing with the duty to maintain and statutory defence under sections 41 and 58 of the Highways Act 1980 (TR v Devon County Council and various cases) 
  • the measured duty of care in cases of natural nuisance (Vernon Knight Associates v Cornwall CC and various cases) 
  • foreseeability in cases of tree root subsidence (Berent v Family Mosaic Housing, Robbins v LB Bexley, Khan v Harrow Council)

Local Authority Liability is essential reading for all lawyers dealing with general common law and public sector claims, local authority risk managers and insurance industry professionals dealing with the public sector.


Angus Piper, Barrister, 1 Chancery Lane
Andrew Warnock, Barrister, 1 Chancery Lane
Mark Whittaker, Partner, DWF LLP


This book is now well established as one which all practitioners dealing with issues of local authority liability would be well advised to have on their bookshelf. Local authorities occupy ground where public law and private law principles frequently meet and analysis is not always easy. The area is also heavily affected by ever-increasing legislation and regulations. Read the full foreword...


In previous editions of our book we have dealt with cases in which the appellate courts have considered the circumstances in which local authorities owe a duty of care, particularly when they are performing a statutory function. When the first edition of this book was published, the high watermark represented by Anns v Merton had been lowered by Caparo. Since then the courts have grappled with the concept of the assumption of responsibility, and also attempts have been made to develop the common law duty of care in harmony with Convention claims brought under the Human Rights Act 1998. The Supreme Court has rejected the latter approach in Michael v The Chief Constable of South Wales Police. Read the full preface...

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Table of contents

  • Contributors
  • Foreword to the Sixth Edition
  • Preface to the Sixth Edition
  • Foreword to the Fifth Edition
  • Foreword to the Fourth Edition
  • Foreword to the Third Edition
  • Foreword to the Second Edition
  • Foreword to the First Edition
  • Table of Cases
  • Table of Statutes
  • Table of Statutory Instruments
  • Table of European Materials
  • Introduction to Duties Owed by Local Authorities
  • Human Rights Act 1998
  • Social Services
  • Education – The Liability of Teachers and Local Education Authorities
  • Housing and Occupier’s Liability
  • Employer’s Liability
  • Highways
  • Environmental Liabilities
  • Advice and Information
  • Emergency Services
  • Trees
  • Index
Read the full contents