Cite as: SC (HL) 31, [] UKHL 3, [] UKHL , [] AC Donoghue v Stevenson [] UKHL (26 May ). Donoghue v Stevenson [] AC negligence, duty of care, neighbour test, tort law. Donoghue v Stevenson []. Facts. Donoghue’s friend purchased her a bottle of ginger beer; The bottle contained the decomposing remains.

Author: Akijora Gajora
Country: Georgia
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Relationship
Published (Last): 7 August 2006
Pages: 429
PDF File Size: 13.50 Mb
ePub File Size: 4.87 Mb
ISBN: 346-1-91262-950-3
Downloads: 26112
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Zulkishicage

It raised the question of exactly which people might be affected by negligent actions. The rule that you are to love your neighbour becomes in law, you must not injure your neighbour; and the lawyer’s question, Who is my neighbour? A dead snail was in the bottle. AG Barr, where a dead mouse was found in a bottle of soft donoghke judges dismissed this action due to a lack of precedent.

Donoghue v Stevenson – Wikipedia

This page was last edited on 21 Novemberat It will require qualification in new circumstances. Prior to Donoghue v Stevensonliability for personal injury in tort usually depended upon showing stecenson damage inflicted directly trespass to the person or indirectly trespass on the case. Who then in law is my neighbour? Minghella, its owner, subsequently became a labourer; he died on 20 March However, when Donoghue’s friend poured the remaining ginger beer into the tumbler, a decomposed snail also floated out of the bottle.

Back to lecture outline on negligence. For more information please refer to our Terms of Use. There was also a sufficiently proximate relationship between consumers and product manufacturers.

Donoghue v Stevenson [] AC , HL | Croner-i

House of Lords The manufacturer was liable. R Pheney and S Sweet. The full allegations made by Donoghue were presented in five condescendences, which claimed that Stevenson had a duty of care to Donoghue to ensure that snails did not get into his bottles of ginger beer, but that he had breached this duty by failing to provide a system to clean bottles effectively, a system that would usually be used in the stevenxon and was necessary given that the ginger beer was intended for human consumption.

However, the court ruled against the claimants. The Snail and the Ginger Beer. The losing parties of both cases appealed to the Court of Session.


Providing resources for studying law. The answer seems to be persons who are so closely and directly affected by my act that I ought reasonably syevenson have them in contemplation as being so affected when I am directing my mind to the acts or omissions which are called in question. Being made ill by consuming a noxious substance did not qualify as either, so the orthodox view was that Mrs Donoghue had no sustainable claim in law.

Thomas’ wife became seriously ill as a consequence and Thomas successfully claimed in negligence; Winchester’s behaviour had created an imminent danger which justified a finding of a duty of care.

This allegation, suggests Chapman, established itself as a legal myth; [7]: Archived from the original on 14 April Lord Atkin stated as follows: I think that [Lord Normand] did not reveal to you that when the law had been settled by the House of Lords, the case went back to Edinburgh to be tried stevensonn the facts. Lord Buckmaster dismissed George v Ztevenson[22] opining that “few cases can have lived so dangerously and lived so long”, [12]: You must take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably foresee would be likely to injure your neighbour.

Donoghue v Stevenson [1932]

A friend, [Note 2] who was with her ordered a pear and ice for herself and a Scotsman ice cream floata mix of ice cream and ginger beer donoghuee, for Wtevenson. Despite the wc in MullenLeechman issued a writ on Donoghue’s behalf against Stevenson on 9 April The House of Lords held that Heller owed Hedley Byrne a duty of care as they used a special skill for Hedley Byrne and because this skill was relied upon by the company although the negligence claim was unsuccessful due to a disclaimer of responsibility included in Heller’s letter.

The manufacturer was sued in negligence and the court held that manufacturers could owe their ultimate consumers a duty of care in limited circumstances. If there should be one, that is, in my view, a matter for the legislature and not for the courts”. It laid the foundation of the modern law of negligenceestablishing general principles of the duty of care.


Although the neighbour principle was a critical part of Lord Atkin’s reasoning, and was therefore part of the ratio of his judgment, neither of the other judges in the majority expressly endorsed the principle. The ginger beer came in an opaque bottle so that the contents could not be seen.

It is a proposition which I venture to say no one in Scotland or England who was not a lawyer would for one moment doubt.

Donoghue v Stevenson [1932] AC 562, HL

Stevenson, Glen Lane, Paisley”. I am unhesitatingly of opinion that those who deal with the production of food or produce fluids for beverage purposes ought not to be heard to plead ignorance of the active danger which will be associated with their products, as a consequence of any imperfect observation of cleanliness at any stage in the course of the process of manufacture At present I content myself with pointing out that in English law there must be, and is, some general conception of relations giving rise to a duty of care, of which the particular cases found in the books are but instances.

The liability for negligence, whether you style it such or treat it as in other systems as a species of “culpa,” is no doubt based upon a general public sentiment of moral wrongdoing for which the offender must pay. The House of Lords gave judgment on 26 May after an unusually long delay of over five months since the hearing.

In other jurisdictions, such as New Zealandthere is now a two-part test for novel fact situations, where the establishment of a duty must be balanced against applicable policy matters. However, it was recorded on 20 December that Donoghue did not pay the costs awarded to Minghella. Stevenson appealed the case to the Inner Housewhere it was heard by the same four judges who had found against Mullen: