Professional Negligence Claims part 1 - Do I have a claim?

In the first of a series of posts giving a brief overview of professional negligence claims, we look at the elements which are required for a successful claim.
A claimant will need to demonstrate that he or she was owed a duty of care by the defendant professional, the professional breached the duty of care, and the breach caused a loss to the claimant.   
Duty of care

A professional may owe various duties to the claimant.  Sometimes this will be obvious, for example where there is a written retainer or agreement between a professional and a client. 

Breach of duty

The claimant will need to demonstrate that the professional fell below the standards of a reasonably competent professional, having regard to the standards normally expected in his or her profession. 


The claimant will need to demonstrate that he or she has suffered loss as a result of the negligence.  A professional may have been negligent, but if this did not cause the loss, then there will be no claim. 


The measure of a claimant’s loss is tied in to issues of causation and can also be a complex issue.  However, the basic principle is to put the claimant into the position he or she would have been in had the professional not breached the duty owed to the claimant.

For more information, please see our 'Brief Guide to Professional Negligence Claims'