Liability issues
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Liability Issues. Laura van der Meer, Esq. When does liability arise?. Damage recognized by the law. A person can be held liable because: He is at fault (fault-based liability) The damage resulted from an ultra-hazardous activity (strict liability).

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Liability Issues

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Liability Issues

Laura van der Meer, Esq.


When does liability arise?

  • Damage recognized by the law.

  • A person can be held liable because:

    • He is at fault (fault-based liability)

    • The damage resulted from an ultra-hazardous activity (strict liability).

    • He agreed to take responsibility under a contract (contract law).


Standards of Liability

  • Fault based liability is the norm.

  • Enforcement of contracts between private parties.

  • Strict liability is reserved for ultra-hazardous activities.


Types of Damage

  • Traditional Damage

    • Personal injury

    • Loss of or harm to property

    • Harm to economic interests

  • Environmental Damage

    • Damage to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity


Existing Situation

  • Existing laws and mechanisms provide necessary means for relief.

    • Law

      • National Law

      • Public and Private Intl. Law

    • Arbitration and Dispute Resolution

      • BSP/CBD Dispute Resolution

      • Permanent Court of Arbitration, others


National Law

  • Traditional Damage

    • Contract Law

    • Administrative Law

    • Product Liability Law

    • Torts

    • Nuisance Law

  • Environmental Damage

    • Environmental or Biodiversity Liability


Environmental Liability

  • General liability law for damage to environment or biodiversity.

  • CBD Article 14.2 process

  • UNEP Initiative

  • Capacity building initiatives


Current Treatment of Liability

  • Biotech/biosafety law is silent:

    -- Japan

    -- Australia

    -- Indonesia

    -- Philippines (Dept of Ag Admin Order)


Viet Nam (2003 draft)

“In the case of adverse effects to the environment and human health, individuals and/or organizations involved in the production and trading of GMOs and their products should be obliged to recover, compensate for damages, and report to relevant authorities.”


Philippines (EO for NBF)

  • Admin

  • Criminal

  • Civil

  • International law

  • Review of remedies


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