CRCJ 3003 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Ginger Beer, Tort Reform, Social Inequality

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LAWS 2202
Jan 20
Hot Coffee Documentary
-corporate interest perpetuated this narrative that frivolous lawsuits were commonplace.
-what is the correct amount of damage to compensate 3rd degree burns on elderly woman?
-putting a monetary value on harm is difficult.
-made to look like grassroots movement. In fact it was corporate interests and and politicans pushing for
these changes
-imbalances of position of parties are inherent and must be acknowledged
-tort reform min states allowed laws to be enacted for caps to be put in place to limit the amount of
harm.
Donoghue v. Stevenson
-snail found in beverage of a ginger beer and woman gets very sick.
-Donoghue has no contract with the ginger beer company.
-key question: should plaintiff be able to sue manufacturer of beer? Even though no contract occurred
since she did not buy directly from the company but instead from a store.
-court found that yes there is a duty of care from the manufacturer to the ultimate consumer of the
product.
-neighbour principle was then translated to law. A neighbour is a person who a reasonable person could
see that would be directly affected by action or inaction.
Kamloops v Nielsen
-house being built in Kamloops is not being built up to safety code. Kamloops did not sufficiently enforce
their own bylaws which led to the foundation being defective. The house was later sold to another
owner years later and that owner brought action against the former owners and the city for negligence.
-initial house owner had close ties to the city council. Eventually a strike occurs and inspectors stop
coming to the house to inspect. Eventually plumbing permit granted and house is completed.
-Nielsen buys the house, has his own inspectors check the house, they find nothing. Later when
plumbing repairs need to be done foundation damage is found.
-Clearly former owners are liable, but is the city?
-Used Anns test to establish that Kamloops had duty of care towards Nielsen
Anns Test
-test was passed in Kamloops
-municipality has the right to make decisions, like how their building code would be and how often they
would check houses for inspections. But when these policies are established they must be followed
through
-Kamloops decided they wanted to inspect houses and specifically the Nielsen house, but then did a half
ass job. This led them to be negligent.
-found 25% at fault.
-anns tets allowed to hold public officials accountable in tort
Cooper v. Hobart
-Eron is investment firm in mortgage. It has received its license from Registrar of Mortage Brokers.
Cooper became an investor with Eron. Cooper eventually lost a lot of money. Registrar shut down Eron
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