Civil Liability Act, 1961

JurisdictionIreland
CitationIR No. 41/1961


Number 41 of 1961


CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 1961

REVISED

Updated to 3 September 2021


This Revised Act is an administrative consolidation of the Civil Liability Act 1961. It is prepared by the Law Reform Commission in accordance with its function under the Law Reform Commission Act 1975 (3/1975) to keep the law under review and to undertake revision and consolidation of statute law.

All Acts up to and including the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Act 2021 (32/2021), enacted 23 July 2021, and all statutory instruments up to and including the Affordable Housing Act 2021 (Commencement of Certain Provisions) Order 2021 (S.I. No. 450 of 2021), made 2 September 2021, were considered in the preparation of this Revised Act.

Disclaimer: While every care has been taken in the preparation of this Revised Act, the Law Reform Commission can assume no responsibility for and give no guarantees, undertakings or warranties concerning the accuracy, completeness or up to date nature of the information provided and does not accept any liability whatsoever arising from any errors or omissions. Please notify any errors, omissions and comments by email to

revisedacts@lawreform.ie.


Number 41 of 1961


CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 1961

REVISED

Updated to 3 September 2021


Introduction

This Revised Act presents the text of the Act as it has been amended since enactment, and preserves the format in which it was passed.

Related legislation

Civil Liability Acts 1961 to 2017 : this Act is one of a group of Acts included in this collective citation, to be construed together as one ( Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 2017, s. 1(2)). The Acts in the group are:

Civil Liability Act 1961 (41/1961)

Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 1964 (17/1964)

Civil Liability and Courts Act 2004 (31/2004), Part 2

Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 2017 (30/2017), Part 2

Annotations

This Revised Act is annotated and includes textual and non-textual amendments, statutory instruments made pursuant to the Act and previous affecting provisions.

An explanation of how to read annotations is available at

www.lawreform.ie/annotations.

Material not updated in this revision

Where other legislation is amended by this Act, those amendments may have been superseded by other amendments in other legislation, or the amended legislation may have been repealed or revoked. This information is not represented in this revision but will be reflected in a revision of the amended legislation if one is available.

Where legislation or a fragment of legislation is referred to in annotations, changes to this legislation or fragment may not be reflected in this revision but will be reflected in a revision of the legislation referred to if one is available.

A list of legislative changes to any Act, and to statutory instruments from 1972, may be found linked from the page of the Act or statutory instrument at

www.irishstatutebook.ie.

Acts which affect or previously affected this revision

Affordable Housing Act 2021 (25/2021)

Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 2017 (30/2017)

Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2013 (38/2013)

Land and Conveyancing Law Reform Act 2013 (30/2013)

Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2011 (23/2011)

Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 (24/2010)

Adoption Act 2010 (21/2010)

Defamation Act 2009 (31/2009)

Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 (26/2005)

Civil Liability and Courts Act 2004 (31/2004)

Personal Injuries Assessment Board Act 2003 (46/2003)

Hepatitis C Compensation Tribunal (Amendment) Act 2002 (21/2002)

Residential Institutions Redress Act 2002 (13/2002)

Hepatitis C Compensation Tribunal Act 1997 (34/1997)

Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 1996 (42/1996)

Merchant Shipping (Liability of Shipowners and Others) Act 1996 (35/1996)

Social Welfare Consolidation Act 1996 (7/1996)

Court and Court Officers Act 1995 (31/1995)

Merchant Shipping (Salvage and Wreck) Act 1993 (34/1993)

Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act 1993 (27/1993)

Liability for Defective Products Act 1991 (28/1991)

Statute of Limitations (Amendment) Act 1991 (18/1991)

Bankruptcy Act 1988 (27/1988)

Courts Act 1988 (14/1988)

Control of Dogs Act 1986 (32/1986)

Animals Act 1985 (11/1985)

Courts Act 1981 (11/1981)

Malicious Injuries Act 1981 (9/1981)

Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act 1981 (1/1981)

Social Welfare (Occupational Injuries) Act 1966 (16/1966)

Succession Act 1965 (27/1965)

Civil Liability (Amendment) Act 1964 (17/1964)

All Acts up to and including Climate Action and Low Carbon Development (Amendment) Act 2021 (32/2021), enacted 23 July 2021, were considered in the preparation of this revision.

Statutory instruments which affect or previously affected this revision

Civil Liability Act 1961 (Section 49) Order 2014 (S.I. No. 6 of 2014)

Finance (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 2011 (S.I. No. 418 of 2011)

All statutory instruments up to and including Affordable Housing Act 2021 (Commencement of Certain Provisions) Order 2021 (S.I. No. 450 of 2021), made 2 September 2021, were considered in the preparation of this Revised Act.


Number 41 of 1961


CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 1961

REVISED

Updated to 3 September 2021


ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS


Acts Referred to

Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1936

1936, No. 40

Statute of Limitations, 1957

1957, No. 6

Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1934

1934, No. 9

Irish Bankrupt and Insolvent Act, 1857

1857, c. 60

Adoption Act, 1952

1952, No. 25

Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1934

1934, No. 9

Workmen’s Compensation (Amendment) Act, 1953

1953, No. 25


Number 41 of 1961


CIVIL LIABILITY ACT 1961

REVISED

Updated to 3 September 2021


AN ACT TO REFORM THE LAW RELATING TO CIVIL LIABILITY, PROVIDING IN PARTICULAR FOR THE SURVIVAL OF CAUSES OF ACTION ON DEATH, FOR PROCEEDINGS AGAINST AND CONTRIBUTION BETWEEN CONCURRENT WRONGDOERS AND FOR LIABILITY IN CASES OF CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENCE, TO PROVIDE FOR DAMAGES FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE DEPENDANTS OF ANY PERSON FATALLY INJURED BY THE WRONGFUL ACT, NEGLECT OR DEFAULT OF ANOTHER, AND TO PROVIDE FOR OTHER MATTERS CONNECTED WITH THE FOREGOING. [17 th August, 1961.]

BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS AS FOLLOWS:—

Annotations

Modifications (not altering text):

C1

Application of Act extended (6.02.1997) by Merchant Shipping (Liability of Shipowners and Others) Act 1996 (35/1996), s. 22, S.I. No. 215 of 1997.

Construction of reference in 1974 Convention to law of the court.

22.The reference to the law of the court in Article 6 of the 1974 Convention shall be construed as a reference to the Civil Liability Act, 1961.

C2

Application of Act extended (1.02.1987) by Control of Dogs Act 1986 (32/1986), s. 21(4), S.I. No. 16 of 1987.

Liability of owner for damage by dog.

21....

(4) ( a) Any damage or injury for which a person is made liable under this section shall be deemed to be attributable to a wrong within the meaning of the Civil Liability Act, 1961, and the provisions of that Act shall apply accordingly.

( b) Sections 11 (2) ( a) and 11 (2) ( b) of the Statute of Limitations, 1957, shall apply to such damage.

PART I

Preliminary And General

Short title and collective citation.

1

1. (1) This Act may be cited as the Civil Liability Act, 1961.

(2) The Air Navigation and Transport Acts, 1936 to 1959, and Part VI of this Act may be cited together as the Air Navigation and Transport Acts, 1936 to 1961.

Interpretation generally.

2

2. (1) In this Act, save where the context otherwise requires—

the Act of 1936” means the Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1936;

the Statute of Limitations” means the Statute of Limitations, 1957;

act” includes default or other omission;

action” includes counterclaim and proceedings by way of arbitration;

any other limitation enactment” includes sections 31, 46 and 48;

bankrupt” includes an arranging debtor;

bankruptcy” includes an arrangement under an order of the court for protection;

concurrent wrongs” means wrongs committed by persons in respect of which they are concurrent wrongdoers;

contract” means a contract under seal or by parol;

contributor” means a person who is liable or alleged to be liable to make contribution;

court” means, in relation to any claim, the court or arbitrator by or before whom the claim falls to be determined;

damage” includes loss of property, loss of life and personal injury;

damages”, except in Part IV, includes compensation for breach of trust;

defendant” includes defendant to a counterclaim;

injured person” means a person against whom a wrong is committed;

liable” refers to legal liability whether or not enforceable by action;

negligence” includes breach of statutory duty;

personal injury” includes any disease and any impairment of a person’s physical or mental condition, and “ injured” shall be construed accordingly;

plaintiff” includes a defendant counterclaiming and a defendant claiming against a co-defendant by notice or otherwise;

third party” includes fourth party and subsequent party;

wrong” means a tort, breach of contract or breach of trust, whether the act is committed by the person to whom the wrong is attributed or by one for whose acts he is responsible, and whether or not the act is also a crime, and whether or not the wrong is intentional;

wrong of the defendant” includes...

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