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Commercial Disputes Weekly – Issue 810 December 2019

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BITE SIZE KNOW HOW FROM THE ENGLISH COURTS

Arbitration
In an important judgment concerning the supervisory jurisdiction of the English courts, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that parties cannot contract out of the mandatory provisions of sections 67 and 68 of the Arbitration Act 1996.
Minister of Finance (Incorporated) & Anr v International Petroleum Investment Company & Anr

Contract
The Court of Appeal has provided a valuable reminder of the importance of clear drafting, holding that while an agent was not entitled to a specified introduction fee where a property sold for less than the price stipulated by the parties, he could still bring a claim for unjust enrichment.
Barton v Gwyn-Jones & Ors

Contract
The English High Court has held that a “no set-off” clause in a loan agreement entered into to finance the acquisition of two vessels did not prevent operation of the prevention principle, which provides that a party in breach of contract cannot rely upon their own wrong.
TMF Trustee Limited & Ors v Fire Navigation Inc & Ors

Enforcement
In a decision which provides clarity to parties looking to enforce orders and judgments, the English High Court has found that a person can be required to attend court to provide information about a judgment debtor’s means in relation to costs orders which remain unassessed and have therefore not yet fallen due.
W Nagel (a firm) v Pluczenik Diamond Company NV & Ors

Insolvency
The English High Court has drawn attention to uncertainties arising from the interaction of the regime for electronic filing of court documents, the Insolvency Rules 2016 and the Practice Direction – Insolvency Proceedings, calling for an urgent review of the drafting of these provisions to ensure they operate effectively.
Causer & Anr v All Star Leisure (Group) Ltd

Jurisdiction
Rejecting arguments that there has been a step-change in the law, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that avoiding a multiplicity of proceedings and the risk of irreconcilable judgments remains an important factor in determining jurisdiction, favouring resolution of claims against multiple defendants in one forum.
ED&F Man Capital Markets Ltd v Straits (Singapore) Pte Limited

Maritime
The High Court has handed down an important judgment on the BIMCO non-payment of hire clause, finding that owners were not entitled to withdraw a vessel in relation to an underpayment of an earlier period of hire.
Quiana Navigation SA v Pacific Gulf Shipping (Singapore) Pte Ltd (“Caravos Liberty”)

Privilege
In a decision which should cause parties to think carefully when drafting settlement terms, the Court of Appeal has held that documents originally covered by without prejudice privilege were not covered once they were incorporated into a settlement agreement.
BGC Brokers LP & Ors v Tradition (UK) Ltd & Ors

Property
The Court of Appeal has provided a useful reminder to landlords of the need to consider appropriate enforcement action where a tenant is in arrears, holding that by exercising commercial rent arrears recovery under the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, a landlord had unequivocally represented that the lease was continuing and so waived the right to forfeit.
Brar & Anr v Thirunavukkrasu

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Should you wish to discuss any of these cases in further detail, please speak with a member of our London dispute resolution team below, or your regular contact at Watson Farley & Williams:

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