Richard Oulton

Breach Of Statutory Duty Health And SafetyThe lately enacted Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 Section 69 amends the HSWA 1974 to remove the right of civil of action for breach of a duty imposed by specific overall health and safety legislation, other than where such a suitable is especially provided for. For present purposes what is maybe most intriguing about Lord Drummond Young’s selection is that whilst the employer was discovered strictly liable for its breach of the applicable regulation, the widespread law case against it was not established. The typical law duty has been expressed by the court as, the affordable and prudent employer taking good believed for the safety of his workers in the light of what he knows or ought to know.” (Stokes v Guest (1968) 1WLR 1886).

Prior to the passing of the ERR Act 2013 (in addition to any claim based on a breach of their contract of employment), workers could bring a claim against their employer for a breach of the frequent law duty of care as nicely as a claim primarily based on a breach of the employer’s statutory duty. This would address the perceived unfairness that accountable and safety-conscious employers had been getting held to a duty that was larger than the typical law duty of care. The Government obliged and Section 69 ERRA has now removed the doctrine of strict liability for employers from all well being and safety regulations which are silent as to civil liability.

To comply with its statutory and prevalent law duties, the Authority has arranged insurance against liability for death, injury and/or illness suffered by any of its employees arising out of and in the course of employment, if brought on by negligence and/or breach of statutory duty on the aspect of the Authority. Some commentators argue that breach of statutory duty can nonetheless be pleaded as evidence of negligence and the requirements by which negligence must be measured.

This does not however seem to stand up to scrutiny given the distinction among the typical law test of ‘reasonableness’ as opposed to the statutory tests of ‘strict liability’ and ‘reasonable practicability’. The Court of Appeal acknowledged that in the past, where there had been a breach of a statutory duty by the employer, courts had been prepared to readily conclude that injuries sustained by a worker had resulted from the employer’s breach (particularly where the risk was foreseeable). Rather than looking by way of and creating indivudal adjustments they just eliminated any opportunity to make a civil claim on basis of breach of statutory duty.

Obtaining stated that, several commentators have proposed that the reforms are a step also far, suggesting that requirements of workplace safety in the UK will inevitably fall as a result of employers becoming complacent against the backdrop of an employer friendly regulatory framework. One of the crucial suggestions of the Löfstedt report, published back in November 2011, was for the Government to implement a assessment of existing health and safety regulations. Negligence is a civil incorrect (tort) involving unreasonably careless conduct (or a breach of the common law duty of care), resulting in loss, harm or injury.

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