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European Tort Law$
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Cees van Dam

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199227679

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199227679.001.0001

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Liability of Public Authorities

Liability of Public Authorities

(p.472) 18 Liability of Public Authorities
European Tort Law

Cees van Dam

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with one of the most disputed topics in tort law in Europe: liability of public authorities. The link with public law is the most obvious complicated factor, combined with the role of discretion when assessing public authorities' liability. Also, the case law of the two supranational courts, the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights, is of increasing influence in shaping the requirements for liability of public authorities. The tendency is towards limiting the discretion of public authorities and this is particularly due to the influence of human rights. The legal systems of France, Germany, and England with respect to liability of public authorities are discussed, along with European Community law, the European Convention on Human Rights law on the right to life and the right to physical integrity and health, inevitability and limits of discretion, and strict liability and the equality principle.

Keywords:   liability, tort law, Europe, public authorities, France, Germany, England, equality principle, human rights, discretion

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