What constitutes Negligence leading to an award for damages (compensation)

In Blog by AAH

Justice Lady Aspin in Seabrook .v. Adams sets out in clear terms what an injured party must show before successfully recovering compensation (damages).
“…It is trite law that a claim in negligence has a number of necessary constituent parts. Put simply, the defendant must owe the claimant a duty of care, that duty must have been breached and the breach must have caused damage of a kind which is recoverable. Once those constituent parts have been proved, the court determines the appropriate remedy or it is agreed by the parties….” https://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2021/382.html
In order to succeed an injured party (claimant) must prove
1; Duty of care
2. That the other party (alleged wrongdoer) has breached that duty of care
3. That that breach of duty has caused damage to the innocent party and that damage must be of a kind that is recoverable
4. One can be negligent but not liable for the damages unless the damage sustained is within the ambit of liability rules. There must defined connection between the wrong and the damage and it must have been foreseeable.
As Lord Hoffman explained in Harding v Wealands [2007] 2 AC 1 at [24] when applying the distinction between a cause of action and the remedy to actions in tort:
“. …it makes no sense simply to say that someone is liable in tort. He must be liable for something and the rules which determine what he is liable for are inseparable from the rules which determine the conduct which gives rise to liability. Thus the rules which exclude damage from the scope of liability on the grounds that it does not fall within the ambit of the liability rule or does not have the prescribed causal connection with the wrongful act, or which require that the damage should have been reasonably foreseeable, are all rules which determine whether there is a liability for the damage in question….”
5. Once 1, 2, 3 and 4 are proved by the evidence before the court, the court will assess the damages sustained by the injured party.
AAH
London
7TH April 2021