Child abuse had been committed in a children’s care home by directors of the company, heads of the home and employees. The insurance policy specifically excluded liability for acts by persons to be regarded as in effect “the company” as opposed to mere employees.

Claimants could therefore not recover damages for deliberate acts of abuse by the managing director and principles of the various homes while the home was under this insurance policy.

The insurer was only obliged to meet claims in respect of acts by employees.

KR and Others -v- Royal and Sun Alliance plc, Before Sir Anthony Clarke, Master of the Rolls, Lord Justice Longmore and Lord Justice Scott Baker. Judgement November 3, 2006

Bullying: foreseeable injury

The claimant was officer in charge of a police investigation who said his fellow officers deliberately bullied, harassed and victimised him for his role and attempted to prevent him from pursuing proper steps in the investigation.

The bullying involved shouting, demanding unnecessary reports; refusing legitimate expenses claims and finally filing a force report against him for alleged false expenses claims.

The defendants argued , as per this quote from Hatton -v- Sutherland 2002 EWCA Civ 75 that no foreseeability threshold could be reached:

“An employer is usually entitled to assume that the employee can withstand normal pressures of the job…”

The Judge here noted that he must be guided by Hatton but also said there was no specific bullying case considered in that action. The Judge concluded that the facts above amounted to bullying and this conduct, particularly the production of a report that was likely to lead to the claimant being disciplined unfairly, was so serious that it was foreseeable the claimant was likely to suffer mental injury.

Clark -v- The Chief Constable of Essex Police (2006) [EWHC 2290] HHJ Tugendhat