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Flashcards in Acts/Rules Deck (43)
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Civil Procedure Rules

April 1999 - Signalled a gradual change in the role of English courts which grant them more extensive powers to manage cases which come before them


Human Rights Act 1998

Incorporates many Convention (for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms) rights into English law, and new legislation presented to Parliament must now include a declaration as to whether it is compliant with the Convention rights


Law Commission Act 1956

Established the Law Commission


Interpretation Act 1978

Lays down certain rules of interpretation which apply to statute law generally (although may be overridden by express provisions of a particular Act):
- Words used in the singular are deemed to include the plural and vice versa
- The use of the masculine gender includes the feminine and vice versa
- The term 'person' is deemed to include artificial entities such as companies as well as human beings


European Communities Act 1972

Any domestic legislation passed or to be passed is to be construed by the courts and take effect subject to EC obligations. Under s2 it has led the English courts to adopt a purposive approach to interpreting domestic legislation.


Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977

Under this Act the collective description 'wrongful interference' was introduced to cover trespass to goods, conversion and certain other torts concerning goods. It simplified procedures and remedies relating to these torts but did not change the common law principle.


Prescription Act 1832

Provides that if the defendant can establish that the actionable nuisance has existed openly and continuously for at least 20 years, their right to continue with the activity in question cannot be challenged


Highways Act 1980

Section 41(1A)
Provides that the highway authority for a particular highway owed the highway's users a statutory duty to maintain it. It states 'In particular, a highway authority is under a duty to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that safe passage along a highway is not endangered by snow or ice'. A breach of these duties gives rise to an action for breach of statutory duty.

Section 58(1)
Provides a defence for the highway authority if it proves that it took reasonable steps to see that the highway would be reasonably safe to travel. Therefore, a claim by a user of a highway who is injured or whose property has been harmed because the highway authority has failed to ensure that the highway was property maintained may be met by this defence.


Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974

Takes the general common law duties of the employer and makes them subject to the criminal law. Can impose criminal penalties including unlimited fines and imprisonment up to 2 years.

Section 2(1):
It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all his employees.

Section 47(1)(a):
Makes it clear that breach of the duty under s.2(1) will not be civilly actionable. As a result, a employer cannot be sued for breach of statutory duty if they breach the general duty that they owe their employees under s.2 of the Act.

Section 15:
Gives the Government power to create statutory regulations governing health and safety in the workplace. Previously, s.47(2) provided that a breach of a duty arising under these regulations would be civilly actionable unless the regulations provide otherwise (now reversed by the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013).


Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013

Section 69:
Amends s.47(2) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 so that a breach of duty under H&S regulations will not be civilly actionable unless those regulations expressly provide that it should be


Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999

States that an employer may be sued if an accident at work is attributable to an employer's failure to implement a suitable and sufficient risk assessment


Employers' Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969

In the case of injury to an employee, insurance is in most cases compulsory under this act


Occupiers' Liability Act 1957

Was passed to simplify the old common law rules. Under the Act a 'common duty of care' (i.e. the same duty of care) is owed to all visitors on the land of another, that is all persons who are not trespassers. The duty is 'to take such care as in all the circumstances of the case is reasonable to see that the visitor will be reasonably safe in using the premises for the purposes for which he is invited or permitted by the occupier to be there'. In most cases, this duty will be much the same as the general duty of care imposed by the law of negligence.


Occupiers' Liability Act 1984

The principles established in the British Railways Board vs. Herrington (1972) case were put into statutory form in the Occupiers' Liability Act 1984. Accordingly, the 1984 Act extends a duty of care to trespassers and other 'uninvited entrants'. There are, however, limitations on this duty when compared to the broader duty to visitors under OLA 1957.
- A duty is owed only if the occupier knows or has reasonable grounds to believe that the danger exists and the trespasser is/may come into its vicinity.
- The risk must also be one against which the occupier may reasonably be expected to offer a trespasser some protection.
- The only protected forms of damage are death and personal injury, with no duty in relation to property.


Consumer Protection Act 1987

Under the Act a producer is liable for personal injury, or damage in excess of £275 to property used for private purposes caused by a defect in their product


Law Reform (Contributory Negligence) Act 1945

Contributory negligence is no longer a complete defence; it merely reduces the damages awarded to the claimant to the extent that the claimant was himself to blame for the injury - it is therefore a 'plea in mitigation' (reduction) of liability rather than a true defence


Civil Liability (Contribution) Act 1978

Any person liable in respect of any damage suffered by another person may recover contribution from any other person liable in respect of the same damage (whether jointly with him or otherwise)


Family Law Reform Act 1969

Under English law a minor is a person below the age of 18


Minor's Contracts Act 1987

Provides that the court may, ‘if it is just and equitable to do so’, require the minor to transfer to the other party any property acquired by the minor under the contract or any property representing it


Consumer Rights Act 2015

- There is implied in every contract for the sale of goods a condition that the seller has a right to sell the goods (s.17)
- Where goods are sold by description, there is an implied condition that the goods will correspond with the description (s.11).
- When the seller sells goods in the course of business, there is an implied condition that the goods supplied under the contract are of satisfactory quality and are reasonably fit (suitable) for the purpose supplied (s.9–10)
- Where goods are sold by sample there is an implied condition that the bulk will correspond with the sample in quality (s.13)


Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 (UCTA)

Section 2 – negligence liability
Under s.2 of the Act, no one acting in the course of business can by means of contractual terms or by any notice given or displayed, exclude their liability for death or bodily injury arising from negligence.

Section 3 – contractual liability
Where one party deals on the other party’s written standard terms of business, then the other party cannot exclude or restrict their liability for breach of contract, except subject to a requirement of reasonableness.

Section 6 – sale of goods and hire-purchase
In these contracts, implied terms as to title cannot be excluded or restricted by a contract term. The other important implied terms can only be excluded in a non-consumer sale where the test of reasonableness is satisfied (the term is a fair or reasonable one to be included having regard to the circumstances which were, or ought reasonably to have been, known to or in the contemplation of the parties when the contract was made). In some cases the court is required to take into account the availability of insurance cover in deciding whether or not it is reasonable for one party to limit their liability.


Life Assurance Act 1774

‘No insurance shall be made’ by a person who has no insurable interest in the life or event in question.

Also requires that the policy shall contain the name of the person interested in it (which suggests the need for a formal policy).


Misrepresentation Act 1967

S.2(1) gives the right to claim damages for negligent misrepresentation.

S.2(2) allows the court to award damages in lieu of (instead of) rescission at its discretion where misrepresentation is innocent.


Limitation Act 1980

The main limitation periods are:
- Simple contract = 6 years
- Personal injuries = 3 years
- Action brought on a speciality contract (deed) = 12 years


Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999

Applies to contracts entered into on or after 11 May 2000. Provides that a third party (i.e. someone other than one of the original contracting parties) can enforce a contractual term if:
1. The contract provides that they may do so; or
2. The contract purports to confer a benefit on the third party, unless on a true construction of the contract it appears that the parties did not intend the term to be enforceable by the third party.


Policies of Assurance Act 1867

Allows legal assignment of life policies, with the result that an assignee can enforce the policy in his own name as long as the requirements of the Act are complied with. The Act indicates the form of words which must be used for the assignment, requires these words to be endorsed on the policy or contained in a separate instrument, and requires that written notice of the assignment be given to the insurer at its principal place of business.


Law of Property Act 1925 s.136

Under this section, the assignment of a debt or chose in action transfers the underlying legal right to the assignee


Statute of Frauds 1677

Provides that contracts of guarantee must be evidenced in writing


Deregulation Act 2015

Provides that the failure of an insurer to deliver a motor certificate no longer affects the validity of the insurance


Gambling Act 2005

Provides that ‘the fact that a contract relates to gambling shall not prevent its enforcement’. Its effect is to bypass the need to prove an insurable interest in policies on goods and, possibly, bypass the need to prove an insurable interest in relation to any policy which is neither life nor marine (including policies on real property).