Negligence Case Study

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Question 1

Area of the Tort law: Negligence Liability
Material Facts: Benji v Parramatta Storms Rugby League Club, Jack and Bronco (Personal Injury- Head)/ Negligence act.
Benji (Plaintiff), a first grade league player of Western Tigers Rugby League Football Club was severely injured following a spear tackle by Parramatta Storms Rugby League Club’s (first defendant) players Jack and Bronco (second and third defendants). Benji was therefore forced into career retirement at his peak due to negligent acts of the defendant. Subsequently, National Rugby League charged the second and third defendant with having made a dangerous throw, to which they pleaded guilty.
Issues: The most pertinent issue at hand is the fact that whether the defendants
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Hence the plaintiff shall claim damages under the Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW) s 3b , which is in respect of an intentional act that is done with intention to cause injury or death. In order to successfully sue the defendants for the loss of earnings, Benji must establish the following three basics elements of negligence as defined by Gibson and Fraser (9th Edition) :
1. Does the defendant owe a duty of care to the plaintiff?
Duty of care could be established from the neighbor’s test from Donoghue v Stevenson [1932] AC 562, where it states that your neighbor is any person who is so closely and directly affected by what you do (the idea of proximity). Furthermore, it can be concluded from Fraser v Johnston (1990) Aust Tort Reports 80-248 that fellow participants in sports owed a duty of care to each other. Second and third defendants were in close proximity to the plaintiff, and hence ought to have duty of care owed to plaintiff.
2. Was there a breach of standard of
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Similarly, in Mccracken v Melbourne Storm Rugby League Football Club, Kearney and Bai [2005] NSWSC 107, judge held that both Kearney and Bai in executing the tackle each used unreasonably dangerous method. The dangerous throw used by Jack and Bronco constituted to acts that were contrary to what a prudent and reasonable person would do and resulted in breach of duty.
3. Was there a foreseeable injury caused by the breach?
Plaintiff shall claim that the actions of defendants’ were intentional which caused harm by personal injury, that resulted in loss of financial stability and career sustainability, which was not insignificant and fell under the scope of defendants’ liability. The ‘but for’ test also establishes that had the defendants acted with care, the plaintiff would have been able to continue normally. Furthermore, the ‘egg- shell skull’ is applicable, which states that the defendant must take the plaintiff as they found them.
Defense: A defense of voluntary assumption of risk can be brought by defendants, which is an inherent risk , especially in recreational activates, consenting to injuries. However the League deemed the defendant’s actions unreasonable and they pleaded guilty to the charges, which weakens their

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