Gibraltar’s Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1996.

Chris Brunt is a Gibraltar employment lawyer, a Barrister and Acting Solicitor who will consider all employment cases on a “no win no fee” basis.

Most employers in Gibraltar are aware that they are responsible for the health and safety and welfare of their employees. In fact, Gibraltar legislation states that the employer has a duty to ensure his employees’ health and safety and welfare. This is contained in Gibraltar legislation and provides:

“It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all his employees”: Regulation 3. (1), Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1996. [the “Regulation”]

I am sure you will agree this is a very wide duty, helpfully other Regulations assist in understanding what is required of an employer. (See later blog posts).

This legislation puts a duty on the employer to comply in its entirety with the Regulation. It will not be surprising to learn, as the duty imposed on employers originates by legislation, that this is what lawyers call a statutory duty.

A significant amount, but not all of Gibraltar’s current Health and Safety law which affects a business originates in its entirety, or in part, from UK legislation, (or via EU Directives or EU Regulations).

While the UK altered their law in 2013 to ensure that an employee in the UK could not sue an employer directly for a breach of statutory duty, reducing opportunities for employees who suffered an injury at work, and who now have the more difficult task in establishing that the employer’s negligence was the cause of the injury. (More on negligence in another blog post).

Gibraltar legislators however chose not to remove the right for employees in Gibraltar to sue an employer directly for breaches of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1996. In fact, Regulation 23 expressly gives the right for employees to directly bring civil claims against their employer for breaches of the Regulation in the Supreme Court of Gibraltar.

This means employees in Gibraltar are better protected as employers in Gibraltar are still exposed to the risk of a direct claim from an employee for breaches of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1996 if their employees are injured at work, and where the employee has the less onerous task, compared to a claim of negligence, in succeeding in a personal injury claim.

All that an employee in Gibraltar has to establish under the Regulation is the employer simply was in breach of his duty, and the breach caused the injury.

You will have noticed from Regulation 3(1) however that all an employer is required to do in order to reduce their risk or defend a claim under the Regulation, in the unhappy event of personal injury at work, is to demonstrate that they have acted as reasonably as is practicable in all the circumstances to ensure the health and safety of their employees. The Supreme Court of Gibraltar will take into account many factors to decide what is reasonable in the circumstances and will include, among other things, factors such as the size and resources of the employer.

Chris is an Employment Law Barrister and Acting Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Gibraltar.

Has your company undertaken a formal risk assessment of the areas in your business that might leave your company exposed? Every business should undertake this exercise. If you are an employer and wish to discuss ways to reduce your exposure to potential Employer Liability Claims, I would be happy to have an informal discussion to see how I could assist your business. Contact me at Phillips Barristers and Solicitors, 292 Main Street, Gibraltar, GX11 1AA. Or call me at (+350) 200 73900.

Are you an employee who has been injured at work? Contact me for a 30-minute no-obligation assessment to discuss any potential claim that you may have.

Contact me for a free 30-minute consultation at Phillips Barristers & Solicitors, 292 Main Street, Gibraltar, GX11 1AA. Call me on 200 73900 or email me at for advice to employers on reducing your businesses’ exposure to an unfair dismissal claim – Or, if you are an employee to evaluate your prospects for a claim for unfair dismissal?

All Employee cases are considered on a “no win no fee” basis.


All opinions are my own and are provided for information only and do not constitute legal advice. Please note that the information and any commentary on Gibraltar law contained in this article are provided free of charge for information purposes only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information and commentary accurate and up to date, but I do not accept responsibility for its accuracy and or for any consequences of relying on it. The information and commentary do not, and are not intended to, amount to legal advice to any person on a specific case or matter. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal legal advice about your case or matter and not to rely on the information or comments on this site

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