Commission seeks new law on damages

BMJ 1995; 310 doi: (Published 08 April 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;310:893

The Law Commission last week called for a change in the law to make it easier to claim damages for psychiatric illness caused by someone else's negligence. The call came as 23 police officers psychologically traumatised by “horrific scenes” at Hillsborough football ground in April 1989, when 96 fans were killed in a fatal crush, took their fight for compensation to the High Court in Sheffield. The officers, who are suing the chief constable of South Yorkshire, Sheffield Wednesday Football Club, and the club's engineers, have been diagnosed as suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Some have had to leave the force as a result.

The commission, the official law reform body for England and Wales, says that a House of Lords ruling in 1992 that denied compensation to …

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