Contract Breach of contract. The claimants sought, against the defendants, damages for breach of contract, and an order for possession and control of buy-to-let properties charged by the claimants to the first defendant Mortgage Express. Receivers from the second defendant firm had been appointed after the mortgage accounts had fallen into arrears. The claimants alleged that the defendants had breached an oral agreement under which the relevant properties would be returned to the claimants if the arrears were cleared. The Chancery Division, Manchester District Registry, in considering a preliminary issue, held that no legal enforceable oral agreement had been made as alleged by the claimants.
Administrator Appointment. A London based company, Harlequin Management Services Ltd, was an international property investment agent, specialising in luxury resorts in the Caribbean. The directors of the company instructed solicitors to give notice of intention to appoint administrators and the notice was filed in May 2013. An issue arose as to whether the administrators had been validly appointed as the requisite consent from the Financial Conduct Authority had been filed the day after the notice of intention to appoint administrators. The directors and the administrators applied for a declaration that the appointment was valid. The Chancery Division, Companies Court, held that, applying settled law, on the proper construction of of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, a consent filed on the day after the filing of a notice of intention to appoint administrators could still be said to have been filed 'along with' a notice of intention to appoint or to 'accompany' the notice of appointment. Accordingly a declaration would be granted that the administrators had been validly appointed.
Albury Asset Rentals Ltd v Ash Manor Cheese Company Ltd (Pt 20 claimant) and Manton Hire and Sales Ltd (Pt 20 defendant)
Contract Damages for breach. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, upheld a decision that a party under a hire agreement for the provision of a forklift truck had not acted unreasonably in refusing to accept a proposal made by the supplier to remedy defects in the forklift. The defects had occurred because the forklift had been too big to move around the customer's premises, despite a representative of the supplier making necessary measurements, and the supplier's suggestion that the forklift be modified to meet the specifications had failed to answer the customer's concerns as to whether the modifications would have an impact upon the warranty, meet health and safety regulations or be permitted by the vehicle's owner, the finance company. Accordingly, the customer had not unreasonably failed to mitigate by refusing to accept the proposals.
Pleading Amendment. The claimant company ran a vehicle recovery business, performing work for the defendant police authority. In 2008, following the discovery of misconduct on the part of the claimant, the police terminated its contract with the claimant and excluded the claimant from a tender that was, at the material time, in progress. The claimant commenced proceedings. Following disclosure, the claimant sought to substantially amend its particulars of claim to include allegations of, inter alia, bad faith and bias. The application was refused as the amendment amounted to a new claim outside of the relevant limitation period and the claimant appealed. The appeal was dismissed and the judge declined to allow the claimant to introduce the new facts by an amendment to its reply. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, dismissed the appeal as the proposed amendments amounted to a new claim, but indicated that the claimant should be able to include limited new facts in an amended reply.
Shipping Charterparty. The Commercial Court granted the claimant permission to serve out of the jurisdiction on the defendants and granted an anti-arbitration injunction against the second defendant, in circumstances where the parties were involved in dispute over the chartering of a vessel and arbitration had been commenced in both England and Singapore.
Patent Infringement. The Patents County Court held that two medical patents were invalid (see ). It gave permission to the defendant company, Novartis, to appeal. Novartis applied to the court, seeking an injunction to prevent the claimant company, Hospira, selling its own generic product. In dismissing the application, the court held that there was a real risk of loss to Hospira if the injunction was granted.
European Union Trade marks. The General Court of the European Union dismissed the action brought by Sanco, SA (Sanco) against the decision of the Second Board of Appeal of the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market, concerning opposition proceedings between Sanco, SA and Marsalman, SL, in respect of the opposition by Sanco to the registration by Marsalman of a figurative sign representing a chicken.
European Union Trade marks. The General Court of the European Union dismissed the action brought by Masottina SpA (Masottina) seeking annulment of the decision of the First Board of Appeal of the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) relating to opposition proceedings between Bodegas Cooperativas de Alicante, Coop. V. (Bodegas) and Masottina SpA concerning the opposition by Bodegas to registration by Masottina of the word sign 'CA' MARINA'.
European Union Trade marks. The General Court of the European Union dismissed the action brought by Unister GmbH, established in Leipzig (Germany), against the decision of the First Board of Appeal of the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) (OHIM) concerning an application for registration of the word sign 'fluege.de' as a Community trade mark.
Company Assets. The claimant bank successfully applied for summary judgment regarding payments due under a discount facility agreement. Following the freezing of the claimant's assets by the introduction of sanctions against Iran, the defendant company claimed that the agreement had been either frustrated or had been terminated by the defendant's acceptance of a repudiatory breach by the claimant.