Trent Strategic Health Authority v Jain and Another: HL 21 Jan 2009

The claimants’ nursing home business had been effectively destroyed by the actions of the Authority which had applied to revoke their licence without them being given notice and opportunity to reply. They succeeded on appeal, but the business was by then ruined. The authority was criticised scathingly. The Authority replied that no allegation of bad faith having been made they had no duty in tort to the claimants.
Held: Human rights law could not be applied here by the English courts since the acts complained of preceeded the 1998 Act. All the authorities pointed to a conclusion that no duty or claim arose. The exercise of the powers under sections 25, 28 and 30 may often, perhaps usually, cause economic damage to the proprietors of the nursing homes, or, in the case of section 25, the intended nursing homes. The purpose of these powers, however, is to protect the interests of the residents in nursing homes. The interests of the proprietors of nursing homes that the homes should remain open for that use ‘are in potential conflict with the interests of’ the residents. The remedy lay in the provision of proceural safeguards. The absence of any worthwhile protection against a health authority whose negligent use of statutory powers to close a care home, ruining its innocent proprietors, was insufficient to create a correlative duty of care.
Baroness Hale: ‘there was indeed a serious injustice here which deserved a remedy. It is with the greatest of regret that we have all reached the conclusion that the common law of negligence does not supply one.’ The claimants may have a remedy before the ECHR.

Lord Scott of Foscote, Lord Rodger of Earlsferry, Baroness Hale of Richmond, Lord Carswell, Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury
[2009] UKHL 4, Times 22-Jan-2009, [2009] WLR (D) 14, [2009] 2 WLR 248, (2009) 106 BMLR 88, [2009] HRLR 14, 106 BMLR 88, [2009] 1 All ER 957, (2009) 12 CCL Rep 194, [2009] PTSR 382, [2009] LS Law Medical 112
Bailii, HL
Registered Homes Act 1984 23(1), Human Rights Act 1998
England and Wales
CitedSporrong and Lonnroth v Sweden ECHR 23-Sep-1982
Balance of Interests in peaceful enjoyment claim
(Plenary Court) The claimants challenged orders expropriating their properties for redevelopment, and the banning of construction pending redevelopment. The orders remained in place for many years.
Held: Article 1 comprises three distinct . .
CitedVan Marle And Others v The Netherlands ECHR 26-Jun-1986
The applicants were accountants who had practised as such for some years when a new statute came into force which required then to register. Their applications were refused.
Held: Article 1PI was engaged. In paragraphs 41 and 42 the Court said . .
CitedLyons v East Sussex County Council 1987
When an authority applies for the revocation of a nursing home’s licence, only evidence relevant to the issues identified in the 1984 Act can be presented. The authority must show a case to the civil standard of proof. The authority need not be . .
CitedX (Minors) v Bedfordshire County Council; M (A Minor) and Another v Newham London Borough Council; Etc HL 29-Jun-1995
Liability in Damages on Statute Breach to be Clear
Damages were to be awarded against a Local Authority for breach of statutory duty in a care case only if the statute was clear that damages were capable of being awarded. in the ordinary case a breach of statutory duty does not, by itself, give rise . .
CitedColumbia Pictures Industries Inc v Robinson ChD 1986
The plaintiff had obtained an Anton Piller order against a defendant whose business consisted almost entirely in the manufacture and sale of pirated videos.
Held: The injunction had been obtained for an improper purpose and without full . .
Appeal FromJain and Another v Trent Strategic Health Authority CA 22-Nov-2007
The claimant argued that the defendant owed him a duty of care as proprietor of a registered nursing home in cancelling the registration of the home under the 1984 Act. The authority appealed a finding that it owed such a duty.
Held: The . .
CitedJD, MAK and RK, RK and Another v East Berkshire Community Health, Dewsbury Health Care NHS Trust and Kirklees Metropolitan Council, Oldham NHS Trust and Dr Blumenthal CA 31-Jul-2003
Damages were sought by parents for psychological harm against health authorities for the wrongful diagnosis of differing forms of child abuse. They appealed dismissal of their awards on the grounds that it was not ‘fair just and reasonable’ to . .
CitedB and others v Attorney General and others PC 16-Jul-2003
(New Zealand) Children were removed from their home. The father was interviewed for suspected child abuse, but no charges were laid. He sought damages in negligence for the way the matter had been handled. Children whose allegations against adopted . .
CitedHarris v Evans and Health and Safety Executive CA 24-Apr-1998
A Health and Safety inspector, making negligently excessive requirements of operators of a bungee jump, was not liable since he operated under a statutory duty and had no duty of care to the operators. His duty was owed to members of the public. . .
CitedBusiness Computers International Ltd v Registrar of Companies ChD 1988
A winding up petition was served at an address which was not that of the plaintiff’s registered office, and nobody appeared at the hearing. A winding up order was made against the plaintiff company, which now sued the solicitors who had misserved . .
CitedCaparo Industries Plc v Dickman and others HL 8-Feb-1990
Limitation of Loss from Negligent Mis-statement
The plaintiffs sought damages from accountants for negligence. They had acquired shares in a target company and, relying upon the published and audited accounts which overstated the company’s earnings, they purchased further shares.
Held: The . .
CitedElguzouli-Daf v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis and Another CA 16-Nov-1994
The Court upheld decisions striking out actions for negligence brought by claimants who had been arrested and held in custody during criminal investigations which were later discontinued. The Crown Prosecution Service owes no general duty of care to . .
CitedBrooks v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis and others HL 21-Apr-2005
The claimant was with Stephen Lawrence when they were both attacked and Mr Lawrence killed. He claimed damages for the negligent way the police had dealt with his case, and particularly said that they had failed to assess him as a victim of crime, . .
CitedReeman and Reeman v Department of Transport; West Marine Surveyors and Consultants and Richard Primrose Ltd CA 26-Mar-1997
The purchaser of a fishing boat had relied on an incorrect safety certificate in respect of the vessel. He sought to claim in negligence.
Held: The object of the statutory scheme pursuant to which the certificate had been issued was to promote . .
CitedMartine v South East Kent Health Authority CA 22-Mar-1993
The authority applied ex parte under the 1984 to the magistrate for the revocation of the plaitiff’s nursing home licence. It was supported by a written statement of the reasons for making the order made by the health authority’s chief nursing . .
CitedHertfordshire Police v Van Colle; Smith v Chief Constable of Sussex Police HL 30-Jul-2008
Police Obligations to Witnesses is Limited
A prosecution witness was murdered by the accused shortly before his trial. The parents of the deceased alleged that the failure of the police to protect their son was a breach of article 2.
Held: The House was asked ‘If the police are alerted . .
See AlsoJain and Another v Trent Strategic Health Authority QBD 4-Dec-2006
. .

Cited by:
CitedHome Office v Mohammed and Others CA 29-Mar-2011
The claimants sought damages saying that after a decision had been made that they should receive indefinite leave to remain in 2001 (latest), the leave was not issued until 2007 (earliest) thus causing them severe losses. The defendant now appealed . .
At HLJain and another v The United Kingdom ECHR 16-Sep-2009
. .
At HLJain and another v The United Kingdom ECHR 9-Mar-2010
The applicants ran a Registered Nursing Home. The health authority, having concerns about its elderly residents, brought an ex parte application under section 30 of the Registered Homes Act 1984 for an order cancelling the Certificate of . .
CitedSteel and Another v NRAM Ltd (Formerly NRAM Plc) SC 28-Feb-2018
The appellant solicitor acted in a land transaction. The land was mortgaged to the respondent bank. She wrote to the bank stating her client’s intention to repay the whole loan. The letter was negligently mistaken and the bankers allowed the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Health Professions, Negligence, Human Rights

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.280077