Composite Negligence I

It is settled law, in a case of composite negligence, where injuries have been caused to the claimant by the combined wrongful act of joint tortfeasors, the liability is always joint and several.

In Khenyei v. New India Assurance Company Ltd., [Civil Appeal No. 4244 Of 2015] it has been considered, “the claimant has the right to recover the entire amount of (potential) compensation from the easiest targets/solvent defendant.” It is not appropriate for the Court to determine the extent of the composite negligence of those joint tortfeasors who have not been impleaded by the claimant. The impleaded joint tortfeasor in fact should be left, in case he so desires, to sue the other joint tortfeasor in an independent proceeding after passing of the decree or award.

If thus X is injured in a road accident caused by the combined wrongful act of industrialist, Y and taxi driver, Z and indeed the apportionment of liability tilts towards the taxi driver – X can still approach the Court exclusively against Y and Y would have to wait his turn to sue Z. This is a good example of how the law can also be against the rich.

Khenyei will not stand the test of time.

Taxi Driver