Published: Fri, 02 Feb 2018

THE LAW REFORM (CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE) ACT 1945

1. Apportionment of liability in case of contributory negligence.

(1) Where any person suffers damage as the result partly of his own fault and
partly of the fault of any other person or persons, a claim in respect of that
damage shall not be defeated by reason of the fault of the person suffering the
damage, but the damages recoverable in respect thereof shall be reduced to such
extent as the court thinks just and equitable having regard to the claimant’s
share in the responsibility of the damage:
Provided that-

(a) this subsection shall not operate to defeat any defence arising under
a contract;
(b) where any contract or enactment providing for the limitation of
liability is applicable to the claim, the amount of damages recoverable by
the claimant by virtue of this subsection shall not exceed the maximum limit
so applicable.

(2) Where damages are recoverable by any person by virtue of the foregoing
subsection subject to such reduction as is therein mentioned, the court shall
find and record the total damages which would have been recoverable if the
claimant had not been at fault.

(5) Where, in any case to which subsection (1) of this section applies, one
of the persons at fault avoids liability to any other such person or his
personal representative by pleading the Limitation Act, 1939, or any other
enactment limiting the time within which proceedings may be taken, he shall not
be entitled to recover any damages from that other person or representative by
virtue of the said subsection.

(6) Where any case to which subsection (1) of this section applies is tried
with a jury, the jury shall determine the total damages which would have been
recoverable if the claimant had not been at fault and the extent to which those
damages are to be reduced.

 

4. Interpretation.

The following expressions have the meanings hereby respectively assigned to
them, that is to say-

“court” means, in relation to any claim, the court or
arbitrator by or before whom the claim falls to be determined;
“damage” includes loss of life and personal injury;
“fault” means negligence, breach of statutory duty or other act or
omission which gives rise to liability in tort or would, apart from this
Act, give rise to the defence of contributory negligence.


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