Gates v Mckenna: QBD 14 Aug 1998

The plaintiff suffered schizophrenia after taking part in an on-stage hypnosis performance by the defendant.
Held: The claim failed: ‘it is highly improbable that the onset of the plaintiff’s schizophrenia had anything to do with his participation in the hypnotism show in which he took part. The only conceivable way in which there could be a causative link would be by classifying the experience as a life event and postulating that the stress which it generated was responsible for triggering the disease.’


Toulson J


[1998] EWHC 2006 (QB), (1999) 46 BMLR 9, [1998] Lloyd’s Rep Med 405




Hypnotism Act 1952


England and Wales


CitedSmith v Leech Brain and Co Ltd CA 1962
The reasoning in The Wagon Mound did not affect the rule that a tortfeasor takes his victim as he finds him.
Lord Parker CJ said: ‘The test is not whether these employers could reasonably have foreseen that a burn would cause cancer and that . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Personal Injury, Negligence

Updated: 17 July 2022; Ref: scu.375089