High Court of Australia

Lithgow City Council v Jackson [2011] HCA 36

244 CLR 352

28 Sep 2011

Case Number: S66/2011


French CJ, Gummow, Heydon, Crennan, Bell JJ


Evidence – Admissibility - Opinion evidence - Section 78 of Evidence Act 1995 (NSW) ("Act") provided that rule excluding evidence of opinion does not apply where "opinion is based on what the person saw, heard or otherwise perceived about a matter or event" and evidence "is necessary to obtain an adequate account or understanding of the person's perception of the matter or event" - Respondent found unconscious and injured in drain - Respondent conceded appellant only liable if respondent fell from vertical retaining wall - Ambulance record contained representation "? Fall from 1. 5 metres onto concrete" - Whether representation was admissible under s 78 of Act as opinion that respondent fell from vertical retaining wall.

Evidence – Admissibility - Hearsay evidence - Business records exception under s 69 of Act - Representation was hearsay evidence in business record - Whether representation must also comply with s 78.

Negligence – Causation - Whether circumstantial inferences sufficient to establish causation.

Evidence Act 1995 (NSW) – ss 69, 78.


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