Discuss the meaning of duty of care must be owed to the plaintiff?
The existence of a duty to take care is essential before a person can be held liable in negligence. It means legal duty rather than mere moral, religious or social duty. Mere carelessness on the part of the defendant cannot be a ground for an action against the defendant unless it is proved that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff. If the defendant owes no duty of care to the plaintiff, the plaintiff cannot take any action against the defendant, even though injury had been caused to him by the act of the defendant in particular.
Lord Atkin propounded the following rule in Donoghue v. Stevenson and the same has gained acceptance:
“You must take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably forsee would be likely to injure your neighbour.”