Law problem questions
Choose one question to answer, in 1200 words or less. Submit to Moodle, via Turnitin, by 5pm Friday
20 January. Do not include your name or student number on your work, as it will be marked anonymously. Do not include a bibliography. Avoid repeating the facts back to the reader. Use OSCOLA referencing system. This assessment counts for 100% of the module mark.
In November 2021, Curtis Ltd (‘CL’) contracted with Minster Museum to carry out works in the sum of £150,000. Starting in January 2022, CL enlarged the main hall and installed wall fixings to display dinosaur bones. CL finished the work on time in July, and in August another firm came in to lay the hall floor with expensive mosaic. Soon after the Museum re-opened in September 2022, one of the wall fixings gave way, causing a T-rex bone to fall to the floor. Both the bone
and the floor were damaged. The Museum Director told CL what had happened. CL offered to discuss ways of resolving the situation, but the Director refused, exclaiming: ‘You are useless, I will get someone else to do it!’
The Museum is now claiming £400,000, for:
1. £150,000 cost of hiring a replacement firm to repair the fixings and the floor
2. £25,000 for lost revenue whilst the repairs were carried out
3. £25,000 for causing shock and distress to the public and museum staff when the fixings collapsed
4. £200,000 for a replacement dinosaur bone Advise CL and then briefly explain whether your answer would differ if CL had finished its work in
August, when the mosaic was being laid.
Cagney Water Services (‘CWS’) has a contract with Hever Council to maintain and repair the local water supply. On 1 September 2022 a pipe burst underneath a section of public pavement in Hever County and began flooding the street. That evening, two CWS employees arrived with a digger. They dug down to the pipe and sealed it. However, there was no more they could do that day, so they put
up a temporary chain-link fence around the hole and went home. That night, two twelve-year-old
friends, Jane and Otto, noticed the works and decided to have some fun. They slipped through the
fence but, whilst peering down to the pipe, Jane lost her footing and fell. She suffered scratches,
bruises and a fractured hand.
Next day, the CWS workers arrived and, in the course of their work, accidentally cut through a gas
main supplying a nearby pottery. As a result the pottery’s kiln shut down whilst 1000 plates were
being fired, and no more plates could be fired until a week later when the gas was restored.
Jane is now claiming for her injuries, and the pottery wants compensation for all the profits it lost
while the gas was off.
Law problem questions
In February 2020 Bill contracted UsPrice quantity surveyors to cost a new extension that VisionIt
architects had designed for his house.
UsPrice’s contract with Bill contained this clause:
‘The other contacting party forgoes the right to litigate against UsPrice for any alleged negligence in
contract or in tort’.
WeBuild were the builders for the project. Before work began, Bill said to UsPrice: ‘I have to move
into a hotel while the work is being done, but I’d like you to pop in from time to time and take a look at what the builders are doing’. UsPrice agreed, and told Bill everything was fine, the project was
In February 2021 the extension was complete and Bill moved back in, just before WeBuild went out of business. In February 2022 he had a survey done, which revealed poor workmanship and use of inadequate materials in the extension. Bill got back in touch with UsPrice and said: ‘I thought you supervised the work? I‘m going to sue you!’
Law problem questions
• Maximum 1200 words in 11-point font Word document
• Do not put your student number/name on your work as it must
be marked anonymously
• Do not include a bibliography
• Do not repeat the scenario facts at the beginning of your answer
• Submit to Moodle via Turnitin by 5pm Friday 20 January 2023
Briefly sets out strategy for response to question
and states category of law engaged
Identifies central legal principles arising from the
facts of the scenario, and states from where the
principles derive (case law/statute)
Applies the identified principles to produce
States the final legal advice /10
Referencing is sufficiently accurate and detailed /5
Structure/comprehension/writing style/ease of
Advice for Curtis Ltd.
Curtis Ltd (CL) has a contract with Minster Museum to carry out works for £150,000. After completing the work on time, a wall fixing gave way and caused damage to a T-rex bone and the floor. The Museum is now claiming £400,000 for the cost of hiring a replacement firm, lost revenue, causing shock and distress to the public and museum staff, and a replacement dinosaur bone.
First, CL should investigate the cause of the wall fixing giving way and determine if there is any evidence of negligence or breach of contract on their part. If there is, CL should take responsibility and offer to cover the cost of repairs and any other damages that are a direct result of their negligence.
If there is no evidence of negligence or breach of contract, CL should refer to the terms of the contract with the Museum to determine if the Museum has any rights to claim for damages. It is possible that the contract includes a limitation of liability clause that limits the amount of damages the Museum can claim.
If the contract does not include a limitation of liability clause, CL should raise the issue of contributory negligence. The Museum Director’s statement of “You are useless, I will get someone else to do it!” suggests that the Museum may have failed to properly maintain the wall fixing after CL completed the work. This could be considered contributory negligence, which would reduce the amount of damages the Museum is entitled to claim.
In addition, CL should also consider negotiating a settlement with the Museum to avoid the cost and uncertainty of a lawsuit. This could involve offering to pay a reduced amount of damages in exchange for the Museum dropping its claim.
In regards to whether the answer would differ if CL had finished its work in August, when the mosaic was being laid, it would not change the advice given above. CL would still need to investigate the cause of the wall fixing giving way and determine if there is any evidence of negligence or breach of contract on their part. Additionally, they would still need to refer to the terms of the contract and consider the issue of contributory negligence.