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Review Your SQE 1 Practice Records

Examination Timing: 00H00M30S

A regular customer of the Rose and Crown pub decided to play a practical joke on the landlord's wife, Emma, by falsely and maliciously telling her that her husband had had a car accident and was lying injured behind the pub. On hearing this, Emma experienced a violent nervous shock. Even after learning the truth, she experienced weeks of suffering and incapacity. 

Which remedy would be most appropriate under the circumstances?

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Aggravated damages would be appropriate in this case since the pub regular had wilfully and maliciously caused Emma distress. In Wilkinson v Downton [1897] 2 Q.B. 57, it was established that a claimant can recover aggravated damages for intentional infliction of emotional distress when the defendant's actions are particularly egregious. The court in Wilkinson v Downton awarded aggravated damages due to the defendant's malicious conduct that resulted in severe emotional and physical harm to the claimant. 

Key Point: The Wilkinson v Downton case is a foundational case in the area of intentional infliction of emotional distress. It highlights that when a defendant's malicious actions cause significant psychological harm, the court can award aggravated damages to compensate for the increased suffering caused by the defendant's conduct.

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