Restating the Common Law? The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Act 2015

22 Pages Posted: 1 May 2017 Last revised: 16 Nov 2017

James Goudkamp

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law

Date Written: March 17, 2017

Abstract

The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Act 2015 entered into force on 13 April 2015. It is too soon for it to have been considered judicially, and it has not yet been subjected to sustained academic analysis. Accordingly, this article considers its impact. In doing so, it situates the Act in its social context and draws attention to the fact that it is part of a large network of statutes that share the same objectives. It is argued, contrary to prevailing views, that parts of the Act change the law. It is also maintained that the Act’s reach is not confined to personal injury cases or even to tort cases. It potentially applies far more widely, including to contractual actions that allege a failure to take reasonable care. In addition to analysing the Act, this article investigates why the legislature might want to restate the common law (which is what the Act does in part), whether replicating the common law is desirable and, if the legislature is bent on restating the common law, how it should go about doing so.

Keywords: Tort Law; Reform; Compensation Culture; Negligence; Rescuers

JEL Classification: K13

Suggested Citation

Goudkamp, James, Restating the Common Law? The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Act 2015 (March 17, 2017). Legal Studies, Forthcoming ; Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper No. 55/2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2935411

James Goudkamp (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law ( email )

St Cross Building
St Cross Road
Oxford, OX1 3UL
United Kingdom

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
72
rank
295,733
Abstract Views
211
PlumX