Remoteness is a legal principle that serves to limit the potential liability of a tortfeasor in practice (Elliot and Quinn, (2007), p104 et seq). Share. It is a well-established rule of law that no person can be held responsible for the doctrine of the remoteness of damages caused by his negligence or carelessness because there is no limit of results of any action. That is not to say that it is a panacea in every difficult case, such as Tremain v Pike [1969] 3 All ER 1303 (concerning the distinction between the foreseeable physical injury of a rat bite and the rare and unforeseeable disease suffered as a result of the bite). Despite this, the remoteness of damage is still helpful in creating a coherent principle and probably more so than the proximity of relationship test. It is a pragmatic solution, allowing measured recovery which permits compensation for foreseeable harm, but not unlimited liability, which would expose a defendant to losses that he could not reasonably have anticipated and also have a potentially draconian inhibitive impact on conduct in society as a whole. Held, that the damage resulting from the explosion was not of the kind as could have been foreseen, and, therefore, the defendants were not liable. Tort: In relation to some types of torts (in particular negligence and nuisance) the test for remoteness of damage is whether the kind of damage suffered was reasonably foreseeable by the defendant at the time of the breach of duty (Overseas Tankship (UK) Ltd v Morts Dock and Engineering Co Ltd (The Wagon Mound No 1) AC 388). The consequence of wrongful act is endless or it would be right to say that it is a consequence of consequence. The issue of remoteness arises on consideration of the fundamental question of legal causation, which involves an analysis of the operative cause of the harm suffered by the claimant in law. Allahabad High Court UP HJS Recruitment 2021 | District Judge: Notification, Syllabus, Pattern, Interface between IPR and Competition Law. The test of reasonable foresight seems to be well established and widely accepted by now to determine the question of the remoteness of damage, the facts of the case and the evidence present shall always be the priority determining factors for the fate of any case. There are two tests for remoteness: the direct consequence test and the reasonable foreseeability test. The only question which has to be answered in such any case whether the defendant’s act is wrongful or not, i.e., could he foresee some damage? Registered Data Controller No: Z1821391. The test of reasonable foresight has been applied to many other cases thereafter. A person is going driving on a road, he hits a girl on the footpath, the girl tumbles on a bicycle breaks her finger, the bicycle man loses his balance and gets in front of a fuel tanker, the tanker to save the man on the bicycle steers left but unfortunately hits the railing to a river bridge and falls into it, the lock of the fuel tank breaks and the oil spills into the river, the driver with the truck drowns. Take a look at some weird laws from around the world! This is not an example of the work produced by our Law Essay Writing Service. This was rejected expressly in the case by the court of appeal in Re Polemis and Furness, Withy and Co. Ltd.[5] in favor of the test of directness. Moreover there have been problems reconciling different rulings on foreseeability, as illustrated by Caledonian North Sea Ltd v London Bridge Engineering Ltd [2000] Lloyd’s Rep IR 249 IH, which highlighted the fact that foreseeability can be interpreted fairly loosely or more strictly in any given context. The doctrine of the remoteness of damages is one such principle. It is submitted that the Wagon Mound No.1 ruling effectively curtailed the practical range of liability that had previously been established in Re Polemis and that Wagon Mound essentially overruled Re Polemis. FACTS – Owing to the negligence of Edison, the dredger Liesbosch was sunk. It cannot be confined by a purity of principle or an obsession with fundamental morality or justice. The plaintiff was employed by the defendants. The case law in this field in the post Wagon Mound No.1 era does not suggest that significant problems or iniquities have arisen as a consequence of the application of the foreseeability test. Any test can be rendered ineffective and deleterious if blindly or mechanically applied. Due to high wind, the fire was carried to the plaintiff’s cottage which was burnt. Law of Torts; Notes, Case Laws And Study Material, Law Library: Notes and Study Material for LLB, LLM, Judiciary and Entrance Exams, Relevancy of Motive in Tortious Liability, Essentials of the Law of Torts | Explained, Internship Opportunity in Gurgaon at Blackberrys; Stipend 8000 p/m. You can view samples of our professional work here. As with the policy issues in establishing that there was a duty of care and that that … You should not treat any information in this essay as being authoritative. Consequently, the owners of the ship were held entitled to recover the loss – nearly 200,000 pounds, being the direct consequence of the wrongful act although such a loss could not have been reasonably foreseen. He gave instructions accordingly but directed that all safety precautions should be taken to prevent inflammable material from falling into the oil. reasonably foreseeable damages & remoteness of loss (the Rule in Hadley v Baxendale and consequential loss) home > Reference > direct, indirect and consequential loss. In the Law of Torts, ‘Remoteness of Damage’ is an interesting topic. In simple terms, if the Re Polemis test still existed, and defendants were liable for any and all consequences of their negligent actions, no matter how unforeseeable or unlikely those consequences might be, it is highly probable that activity in society would be quite drastically impaired, because potential tortfeasors (every member of society) would be intimidated by the potentially draconian and inestimable consequences of making a mistake. Presumably Viscount Simmonds uses the word “current” to suggest that the law had evolved over forty years of the twentieth century, from its application in Re Polemis in 1921 to reach a state by the time of the Wagon Mound No.1 decision in 1961 in which it was deemed appropriate to incorporate a foreseeability factor into what was hitherto open-ended liability. This paper discusses the legal concept of remoteness in the tort of negligence. It would be unacceptably harsh for every tort feasor to be … For testing Remoteness of damage there are two tests. Thus, on the basis of the foregoing analysis, Viscount Simmonds’ contention is supported. It doesn’t rely on: the type of breach that would take place to cause it the events that might cause it Your email address will not be published. 1 0. The relevant … Now, the test is based on foreseeability. The damage may be proximate or might be remote, or too remote. If the loss was of a foreseeable type, the defendant is liable for the full extent of the loss, even if the loss was much greater than expected. As Horsey and Rackley comment: ‘When a court asks whether a harm was too ‘remote’ a consequence of the defendant’s negligence (breach of duty), what is essentially being asked is whether the consequences of the negligent action were so far removed from it as to have been unforeseeable by the defendant’ (Horsey and Rackley, (2009), p247). If the same damage would have been suffered even if there had been no breach of a duty of care, then the claimant loses. It was found that the damage was thus too remote for recovery (Steele, (2007), p182 et seq). The test for remoteness was initially one of directness. The reason why a new dredger could not be purchased by the plaintiffs was their poverty and the House considered the additional loss being due to the extraneous cause of poverty and as such too remote. This is because whereas the Proximity of relationship test is a complete variant and changes in every circumstance, the foreseeability of damage is an objective test and therefore has a constant element. As with all generally applicable tests in law, it is the application and interpretation of the test in specific instances that is the most important thing, not the bare principle inherent in the test itself. Compilation of Important Landmark cases on "Remoteness of Damages" by … The exact cause of the fire is unknown, but the most probable explanation which the Court accepted was that underneath the wharf was floating a piece of debris with some smouldering cotton waste or rag on it. Overall, the precedent bank in this area of law indicates that the foreseeability test almost always produces the fairest result in a case. » Tort of Negligence » Remoteness of damage » Robinson v Post Office and another [1974] 1 WLR 1176. Held. causation of damage damages not recognised at law loss associated to illegal activities loss unable to be quanitified wrongful life anxiety or disturbance loss. REMOTENESS OF DAMAGE 293 is probably the most significant contribution of Chapman v. Hearse to the law of negligence. This paper concludes that foreseeability should remain the applicable test for remoteness. But, as many cases have shown, assigning liabilities is not always a simple task at hand. If foreseeability is sensitively and flexibly applied in the context of determining remoteness of damage then it can serve as a good and appropriate measure of liability in almost any conceivable instance. And it is to be noted that the accountability to negligence is made on the assumption that the person is aware of the fact that rash driving can lead to fatalities. It is submitted that the leading case in this field is Overseas Tankship (UK) v Morts Dock & Engineering Co Ltd, The Wagon Mound No.1 [1961] 1 All ER 404, which is the case featured in the title to this work. It is fairly pointless to point to the margins of application of a legal test and then subject that test to criticism unless a superior alternative presents itself. Edition 8th Edition. Marc Stauch. By Jason Lowther. It is this principle that Viscount Simmonds criticised in the quote featured in the title from the Wagon Mound No.1 decision. This provides that the defendant is only liable for loss which was of a foreseeable kind. Registered office: Venture House, Cross Street, Arnold, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG5 7PJ. When the respondents’ manager became aware of the conditions in the vicinity of the wharf, he instructed the workmen that no welding or burning operations were to be carried on until further orders. Alcoa Minerals Of Jamaica V Broderick(2002) The claimant’s property was damaged by the defendant’s negligence. There is at first sight a tempting argument to the contrary. This is called the doctrine of the remoteness of damages. It would be much harder and far more expensive to acquire insurance to cover activity that could potentially result in untold and unforeseeable harm than it is to insure oneself against foreseeable ranges of harm and loss. ... A
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