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Ubi Jus Ibi Remedium

Law of Tort is characterized by the acts which are civil wrong and the remedy for such wrongs is available in the form of compensation/damages. Now, there are certain Latin maxims such as Injuria Sine Damnum, Damnum Sine Injuria, Ubi Jus Ibi Remedium, Volenti non fir injuria and so on.

Damnum Sine Injuria:

In simple words, the meaning of this maxim is damage without injury. Damage includes the loss in terms of money, health etc. and injury means the injury to legal right. This concept was discussed in the case of Gloucester Grammar School Case, the plaintiff filed a suit against another educational institution which was opened near his school. Due to which the plaintiff suffered huge monetary loss and the admissions in his school were also decreased. The court held that there is no infringement of Plaintiff's legal right so no cause of action arises.

Injuria Sine Damnum:

The meaning of this latin maxim is injury without damage. It is contrary to damnum sine injuria. According to this maxim, if someone has suffered monetary loss due to the act of another person but there is no violation of his legal right then there does not arise any cause of action. The important thing is the infringement of legal right to establish the cause of action.

This concept was discussed in the case of Ashby v. White, in which the plaintiff was restrained from casting his vote in parliamentary election though he did not suffer any monetary loss but his legal right was violated. So, the court held that he is entitled to get some amount of compensation because of the infringement of his legal right.

Ubi Jus Ibi Remedium:

This maxim is directly associated with damnum sine injuria. The meaning of the word jus is legal authority so the meaning of ubi jus ibi remedium is where there is a right there is a remedy. The right and remedy are conjoined terms. If someone has the right regarding something then obviously there exists some sort of remedy in case of the violation of such right. In the famous case of Leo Feist v. young, the circuit court of appeals of USA observed that:
it is an elementary maxim of the equity of jurisprudence and there is no wrong without a remedy.

If any legal right of a person is violated then, the right to go to the court of law also exists provided, such right is legal. Moral or religious rights are not actionable.

  • This maxim is applicable only where the right in question is legal.
  • The wrongful act must violate the legal right of a person; only then the cause of action may arise.
  • In case, no legal injury is done to the person then the maxim 'damnum sine injuria' will be applied.

Relevant Case Laws
Sardar Amarjit Singh Kalra v. Promod Gupta & Ors., in this case the court recognized the maxim ubi jus ibi remedium as fundamental principle of law. It was held by the Supreme Court that it is the duty of courts to protect the rights of people and to grant reliefs to the aggrieved party rather than denying it.

In D.K. Basu v. State of West Bengal, this is one of the landmark cases. This case is related to the cruel and inhumane condition of the detained persons. Mr. D.K.Basu who was the chairman of legal aid services, West Bengal wrote a letter to Chief justice of India describing the death of a person in police custody which was published in the newspapers namely, the India Express and The Telegraph. Thereafter some guidelines regarding the arrested persons were issued by the Supreme Court. The court further held that violence in police custody is the violation of legal right of that person and the compensation in the form of remedy must be given in such cases.

In Bhim Singh v. State of Jammu & Kashmir, this case was regarding the wrongful detention of a MLA of Jammu and Kashmir who was arrested by a police officer while he was in his way to parliamentary assembly. He was detained and was not allowed to attend the parliamentary session. Moreover, he was also not produced before the magistrate in time. There is a clear cut violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India. The Supreme Court held that the defendants were responsible and awarded Rs.50,000 as compensation to the petitioner for the infringement of his fundamental right.

In Maretti v. William, the plaintiff was restrained to withdraw the money from the defendant's bank in spite of the presence of sufficient amount of funds in his account. So there was the violation of the legal right of plaintiff. The court applied the maxim ubi jus ibi remedium, and held that the plaintiff is entitled to get the damages because of the infringement of his legal right.

Where the statutory laws do not provide any remedy, the legal principle, 'where there is a right there is a remedy' shall be applied (Shivkumar Chadha v. Municipal Corporation of Delhi)
Law always punishes the wrongdoer. Various statutory provisions are established which contains the remedies for the injured party. Therefore, law has guaranteed us certain rights and privileges then, law also ensures certain remedies for the protection of such rights. If there is the existence of legal right then there is legal remedy also available. This doctrine of common law in England also establishes the fact that there is remedy for each and every wrong.

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