Consequential harm where the plaintiff suffers mental

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CONSEQUENTIAL HARM = Where the plaintiff suffers mental harm as a result of suffering some other kind of injury (injury = personal or mental). NB: MENTAL HARM CAUSED BY PROPERTY DAMAGE OF ECONOMIC LOSS = PURE; IF MENTAL HARM CAUSED BY PD OR EL, NEED TO DO DOC FOR THESE AND PURE MENTAL HARM. STATUTE Reasonable Foreseeability Section 72(1): D does not owe a DOC to the plaintiff unless the defendant foresaw or ought to have foreseen that a person of normal fortitude might in the circumstances suffer a recognised psychiatric illness if they did not take care. Section 72(2): Circumstances include a) Whether the mental harm suffered as a result of sudden shock b) Whether the plaintiff witnessed, at the scene, a person being killed, injured or put in danger. c) The nature of the relationship b/w the plaintiff and any person killed, injured or put in danger. 7 Perre v Apand Pty Ltd (1999) (Infected potato chips) FACTS: Apande made potato chips and contracted farmer to grow the seed that they provided. They provided them with infected seeds preventing them to sell to WA who had a rule that processors and those in a 20km diameter of infected seeds could not sell there. RULE: Amongst others – Salient feature - courts do not want to interfere with ordinary economic practices. DUTY OF CARE (MENTAL HARM)
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d) Whether or not there was a pre-existing relationship between the plaintiff and the defendant. Section 72(3) : Exception to circumstances: 73(2) does not effect the duty of care of the defendant to the plaintiff if the defendant knows, or ought to know that the plaintiff is a person of less than normal fortitude. Pure Mental Harm from Death/Injury/Endangerment to Another Section 73(1): In respect of those suffering pure mental harm as a result of another person being killed, injured or endangered by an act or omission by the defendant; Section 73(2): Cannot get damages unless a) plaintiff witnessed it at the scene b) plaintiff was in a close relationship with the victim; Tame v NSW; Annetts v Australian Stations Pty Ltd (Wrong BAC recorded)(Missing Son) FACTS (TAME): Plaintiff was involved in a minor traffic accident. The police reporting the incident accidentally recorded the other drivers’ BAC as being the plaintiff’s and it was well above the legal limit. The mistake was quickly rectified but for a while the plaintiff was considered a drink driver. She became obsessed by the matter and sustained a psychological illness. Issue: Did the policeman owe the plaintiff a DOC. HELD: No DOC. The plaintiff’s psychological illness was not reasonably foreseeable (upset maybe). Gleeson CJ, Gaudron &Hayne JJ: Cause of conflict of duties : policeman has a duty to take down all relevant details in a situation if he has to worry about psychological harm he will not be able to do this.
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