Case Review: Shelbourne v Cancer Research UK Ltd [2018] EWHC 4004 (QB) (11 December 2018)

Getting merry at a Christmas party…attempting the Dirty Dancing lift….injuring your back……Could the employer (Cancer Research) still be held liable?......Possibly YES!

A Cancer Research employee who suffered a serious back injury at a Christmas party when a colleague attempted to lift her on the dance floor but dropped her has been given leave to appeal against the High Court finding that she had no rights to compensation from her employer. The High Court, in the first instance, had held that her employer was not liable in negligence for her injury and was not vicariously liable for the actions of the colleague who caused the injury. 
However, permission to appeal was granted both in relation to the High Court's findings on the direct duty the employer owed to the employee.  The Judge in allowing the appeal stated that the Claimant has reasonable prospects of success in all three elements of her claim: Firstly, the duty of her employer to devise and implement and adequate risk assessment and, in particular, risk assessment addressing the risk arising from consumption of excess alcohol by those attending the party. Secondly, in relation to the duty on those enjoined with the task of supervision to intervene where inappropriate behaviour took place. thirdly, the duty of care in relation to supervision.

Posted on 5 September, 2019 by Ortolan

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