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The purpose of this study is to test your group’s understanding of the legal principles discussed in lecture 7 (torts – law of negligence) as they apply to a recent, real case.  The extracts which have been on Moodle for a week refer to the ratios (reasoning) of both the primary judge (who first heard the case) and the Court of Appeal (which varied the primary judge’s decision. 

The case study requires you to express legal principles from the case in your own words.  It is not a cut and paste exercise. Some short quoting of a phrase or sentence from the court’s reasoning is allowed (to show you can identify an important principle) but copying large sections of wording from the judgment is not an answser;  it will count as plagiarism and not earn any marks. 

Be aware that some questions ask you to state facts while others require you to identify and explain a legal principle ... be careful to do what is asked (ie, stating just facts when a legal principle is asked for will earn a low mark or no mark at all).

To answer the first question you should copy from this document into your answer the blank template provided below and insert your responses to the various parts of it. As this is a Word document, you can expand the size of each field to enable a full explanation of your answer to be given.

Word limit for the case study is about 1,000-1,200.Marks available for each of the 7 questions (out of 20) are stated in square brackets. Do not repeat (re-type) the questions in your answer;  this causes a high similarity score in Turnitin.  Just put a heading over each answer : “Question 1”, “Question 2”, etc.The team leader is responsible for submitting the group’s answers, once completed, in two ways:

  • a soft copy is to be uploaded into Turnitin by 10pm on Thursday 31 May (the time set out in the course outline will be altered to allow this);
  • one hard copy is to be handed to a tutor for marking;
  • if all group members have the same tutor (whether at the same time or day, or not), the hard copy is to be given to that tutor;
  • if group members have different tutors the hard copy can be given to any tutor;
  • the tutor to whom the hard copy is given will mark it ... tutors will not accept case studies for passing on to another tutor;
  • hard copies will NOT be accepted at reception at Kent Street or Market Street;
  • a cover page, completed and signed by all members of th group must be attached to each case study. 

1              The primary (ie, first) judge found that Verryt (the car driver) was liable to Schoupp (the boy) for the injuries he suffered. Using the template below analyse the facts in this case to explain fully the reasoning the judge would have followed in applying the law to come to this legal conclusion.  [5 marks] 

Legal element

Facts which satisfy the legal element












2              The primary judge also found that Schoupp (the boy) had been careless about his own safety in four ways.  However, the judge only took account of three of those ways in assessing the boy’s responsibility for own injuries (ie, he disregarded one of them). 

(a)          What were the four acts of carelessness by the boy? [2 marks]

(b)          Which of the four did the judge disregard and for what legal reason did he take no account of it? [2 marks]

3              Despite finding that the boy was partly responsible for his own injuries the primary judge decided the driver should bear total responsibility (blame).  What reason did the primary judge give for coming to this conclusion? [3 marks]

4              In the appeal the Court did not consider  whether the actions of either the driver orthe boy had broken any statutory rule of the road. Explain why the question of whether any road rule had been broken was not relevant to the legal issue the Court of Appeal was deciding. [2 marks]

5              The Court of Appeal took a different view from that of the primary judge (as described in question 3) and said the boy must bear at least some blame. On the basis of what facts did the Court of Appeal come to this conclusion? [2 marks]

6              Despite concluding the boy must bear part of the blame the Court of Appeal said that it should be only a small part (ie, 10%).  Explain the Court of Appeal’s ratio (ie, reasoning) in coming to this conclusion. [2 marks]

7              The Court of Appeal declared that the driver was responsible for the safe functioning of the vehicle vehicle and ‘skitching’ was not a safe function.  What precedent (ie, principle having a wider application that to just this case) is the Court of Appeal expressing here which could apply to other persons in charge of cars, or a power boat on the water, or persons supervising activities where others (adults or children) are involved? [2 marks]

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