0370 270 6000

already registered?

Please sign in with your existing account details.

need to register?

Register to access exclusive content, sign up to receive our updates and personalise your experience on brownejacobson.com.

Privacy statement - Terms and conditions

not a "sufficiently close connection” in Morrisons case

14 February 2014

The Court of Appeal has handed down judgment in the case of Ahmed Mohamud v WM Morrison Supermarkets PLC (2014), a damages claim by a customer who was assaulted and injured by a sales assistant at a supermarket petrol kiosk. Morrisons had no reason to think the employee might be violent, but the claimant relied on the mere fact that there was interaction between a customer and a sales assistant to allege vicarious liability, seeking to significantly widen the scope of this principle.

The judge at first instance had rejected the claimant’s case.

The Court of Appeal, whilst recognising that each case will turn on its facts, held that the interaction was not sufficient to make the employer liable for the assault. Careful consideration needs to be given to the closeness of the connection between the tort and the employee’s duties. The fact that employment provides the opportunity for an assault in itself is not enough. Thankfully common sense has prevailed.

related opinions

Equal pay at ASDA stores - appeal to the Supreme Court unsuccessful

35,000 workers working in ASDA’s retail business sought to compare themselves to workers at distribution depots for equal pay purposes. Find out more about this Employment Appeal Tribunal.

View blog

Service charges – the bad news keeps coming for tenants!

A few months ago, we discussed a case where the Court of Appeal ruled that the wording of a lease precluded the tenant from arguing that certain costs should not have been included in the service charge calculation. A recent high-profile case concerns a broadly similar issue, this time in relation to the proportion of the landlord’s costs payable by a tenant.

View blog

A landlord’s service charge certificate was conclusive as to the sums payable by a tenant under a lease

The Court of Appeal has ruled that the wording of a service charge clause precluded a tenant from challenging the sums claimed by a landlord.

View blog

Handing back an empty shell of a building did not fulfil a vacant possession break condition

Break rights have proved a fertile source of litigation over the last few years. Courts have consistently required strict compliance with the terms of those rights.

View blog

mailing list sign up



Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up