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   Home      Robinson v Chief Constable West Yorkshire
 
 
Robinson v Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police [2018] 2 WLR 595 Supreme Court
 
 
The claimant was a 76 year old woman who sustained injuries when she was knocked to the ground by a drug dealer in his escape from arrest. Two police officers who were trying to carryout the arrest fell on to the claimant when she was on the ground. She brought an action in negligence against the police. The trial judge applied the Caparo test for duty of care and found that it was reasonably foreseeable that harm would result from the officer's actions and the claimant was in very close proximity, but dismissed the claim on the third stage of Caparo on the grounds that Hill v CC Yorkshire had granted immunity to the police from negligence claims.
 
 
Supreme court Held:
 
A duty of care was owed. Where there exists an established ground of liability such as personal injury there is no need to apply the third stage of the Caparo test.
 
Lord Reed:

" The proposition that there is a Caparo test which applies to all claims in the modern law of negligence, and that in consequence the court will only impose a duty of care where it considers it fair, just and reasonable to do so on the particular facts, is mistaken...."> In the ordinary run of cases, courts consider what has been decided previously and follow the precedents (unless it is necessary to consider whether the precedents should be departed from). In cases where the question whether a duty of care arises has not previously been decided, the courts will consider the closest analogies in the existing law, with a view to maintaining the coherence of the law and the avoidance of inappropriate distinctions. They will also weigh up the reasons for and against imposing liability, in order to decide whether the existence of a duty of care would be just and reasonable. In the present case, however, the court is not required to consider an extension of the law of negligence. All that is required is the application to particular circumstances of established principles governing liability for personal injuries."