Psychiatric Treatment Of Psychiatric Harm

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This essay is based on the subject of whether or not a duty of care, in terms of psychiatric harm can be established through an individual or individuals being negligent. The defendant’s negligence is either due to almost injuring the claimant, who then suffers from psychiatric harm, or killing or badly injuring a victim causing the claimant to suffer from psychiatric harm. Psychiatric harm can be defined as an assault on a person’s senses or mind rather than actual physical contact. It has to be determined from the scenarios given, whether or not Steve could be held liable for the recognisable psychiatric harm of the individuals given in the scenario’s. Psychiatric illness has to be recognisable due to the floodgates of people who try to…show more content…
With Daria stating she has nightmares and is unable to return to work, it has to be decided whether this further contributes to her condition, as for a defendant to be liable, you have to have a recognised medical condition. If Daria is seen to have a recognisable psychiatric illness she would have been owed a duty of care by Steve. For this to be fully established, the case of Caparo states there are three requirements for a duty of care to be owed. These requirements are foreseeability, proximity and fair, just and reasonable. It can be understood that the actions of driving in a negligent manner, as stated in the scenario of Tom, that harm to someone on the road would be reasonably foreseeable. The relationship of proximity in this context relates space and time. With Daria being there at the exact timing of Tom’s death and being only a few inches from injury herself, it could be proven she satisfies the requirement for this particular part of the test by way of her shock being caused due to sudden and direct witnessing. This can be further analysed in the case of McLoughlin v O’Brien where the House of Lords allowed the plaintiffs claim on the basis she had been around at the time of ‘the immediate
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