The High Court recently handed down judgment in this case where Kate Richmond, instructed by Bosley & Co, successfully defended homeowners in a claim brought by a tradesman alleging a failure to prevent him falling from the first storey of their property which was undergoing construction.

On 11th January 2016 the Claimant attended the Defendant’s property to quote for plastering work. The property was in the process of being converted from a bungalow to a two storey house. The Claimant fell through chipboard on the first floor where the stairwell was being cut through and fractured his wrist. The Claimant maintained that he was unable to work and was claiming losses in excess of £230,000.

After a two day trial with evidence from five witnesses, the Judge found for the Defendants that neither was an “occupier” of the property within the meaning of the Occupiers Liability Act 1957 at the time of the accident.

In any event, the Judge concluded that there was no breach of any duty of care. The Judge found that the Claimant was warned about the risk of going up to the first storey and considered that the risk would have been obvious to someone with the Claimant’s skill, expertise and experience.

The judgment can be read on BAILII here.