Criminal law Driving offences. The imposed a personal burden on a recipient of a notice to prove, on the balance of probabilities, that they had given the police information about the driver of a vehicle when a traffic offence was uncovered. Accordingly, the Administrative Court dismissed the appellant's appeal by way of case stated against his conviction for failure to give information relating to the identification of the driver of the vehicle, as he had placed his personal responsibility in the hands of a third party.
Claim form Service. The claimants' claim form, seeking damages or equitable compensation from the defendants, as their former accountants and financial advisers, for alleged breaches of contract, negligence, and breach of fiduciary duty and-or statutory duty, had not been served by provision of a copy under cover of letters to the defendants' solicitors. The Chancery Division further refused orders for service by an alternative method, dispensing with service or an extension of time for serving the claim form.
Damages Personal injury. A total sum of 580,618.52 was awarded to the claimant after the defendant NHS trust's admitted negligence in failing to detect signs of cancer from a number of smear tests and biopsies. The Queen's Bench Division also awarded the cost of two surrogacy procedures in the United Kingdom.
Motor insurance Compulsory insurance against third party risks. The Court of Justice of the European Union held that of Council Directive (EEC) 72-166, arts1(1) and 2(1) of the Second , and art1a of the Third precluded national legislation which excluded from cover and compensation by compulsory civil liability insurance in respect of the use of motor vehicles, the personal injuries and damage to property sustained by a pedestrian who was the victim of a motor vehicle accident, on the sole ground that that pedestrian had been the insurance policy holder and the owner of the vehicle that had caused those injuries and that damage.
Claim form Service. Providing guidance on the interpretation and application of CPR6.14 and 7.5, the Queen's Bench Division refused the defendants' application for an order to the effect that service of a claim form had been invalid and that the court lacked jurisdiction to hear the claim.
Negligence Duty to take care. In dismissing the claimant's case of negligence against his former solicitors, the Court of Appeal Civil Division held that solicitors acting in a high volume, fixed costs scheme for low value personal injury cases, were not under a duty to advise about heads of claim which the client had said he did not wish to pursue and for which he said that he could not provide supporting evidence.
Department for Communities and Local Government v Blackmore (Executrix of the estate of Hollow, deceased)
Negligence Contributory negligence. The Court of Appeal Civil Division confirmed that the correct approach to the assessment of contributory negligence was that once contributory negligence has been established, the court had to take into account both the extent of the claimant's responsibility for his injury and damage and the blameworthiness of his conduct as opposed to that of the defendant in deciding on the reduction in damages that was just and equitable. In so doing it dismissed the appellant's appeal on the basis that the reduction in the claimant's damages of 30% was less than half of the actual contribution that the court found he had made to the relative risk of contracting cancer through his smoking.
Practice Order. The First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) had been entitled to make an order debarring the Revenue and Customs Commissioners from taking further part in proceedings brought against the Revenue by the taxpayer company regarding two VAT assessments and a decision made by the Revenue against the taxpayer. The Supreme Court so held in dismissing the Revenue's appeal against a decision of the Court of Appeal, Civil Division, which had restored the debarring order.
Costs Order for costs. The Chancery Division dismissed the claimant's application to claim certain costs, in proceedings concerning alleged phone hacking and other unlawful activities said to have been carried out by the defendant company's newspapers. There was no meaningful sense in which the parties had agreed on a sum as being the damages figure appropriate to the claim. The court allowed the defendant's application for indemnity costs, on the ground that there had been a culpable failure to engage in negotiations that would, if conducted more properly, have been likely to have led to a settlement.
Negligence Duty to take care. In breach of contract and in breach of its duty of care at common law, the defendant employer had postponed an internal investigation, which had had been a maintaining factor in the claimant's depression. The Queen's Bench Division further rejected the defendant's case, that the claimant had been guilty of misconduct which would have led to his dismissal.