Practice Summary judgment. The Court of Appeal Civil Division upheld the Commercial Court decision to grant the claimant summary judgment on its claim for payment of its demand under the standby letters of credit. Although the trial judge had used the wrong test, the facts and matters put forward as evidence of fraud did not amount to fraud at all; the judge was therefore right to order summary judgment in the sum which he had done.
Costs Order for costs. The Technology and Construction Court made rulings as to costs following the main judgment in a case about the failed redevelopment of premises for use as a church. The court held that, among other things, an issues-based costs order was not appropriate, and that the claimant bank would be deprived of 20% of the costs that it was owed to reflect its lack of success in the issues of contributory negligence and causation.
Building contract Construction claim. The Technology and Construction Court allowed the defendant engineering firm's application for an order requiring the claimant to answer a request for further information concerning advice given by the claimant's expert at the time when it had decided to undertake remedial work in respect of a luxury development near Harrods. The claimant had brought proceedings against the defendant, alleging that it had failed adequately to design basement walls for the development. The court held that the claimant should answer the request where it was at least arguable that some of opinions of the claimant's litigation expert had been taken into account by the firm of engineers, upon whose opinion the claimant had based its decision to carry out the remedial work.
Practice Striking out. The Queen's Bench Division allowed the claimant's appeal against the master's decision, striking out his negligence claim against the defendant British Medical Association. At the summary judgment stage, it could not be said that the claim was susceptible to a strike out as being time-barred, was an abuse of process, or that it was fanciful or one with no reasonable prospect of success.
Medical treatment Consent to medical treatment. The Court of Protection rejected the argument that of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 precluded it from relying on an argument based on the wishes and feelings the first respondent, who was in a minimally conscious state, and what he would have wanted and would have decided, based on his wife's opinion. The first respondent would, in the exercise of his right of self-determination, not have consented to further clinically assisted nutrition and hydration, and his best interests were best promoted by not giving consent on his behalf.
European Union Insurance. The Court of Justice of the European Union gave a preliminary ruling deciding that of Directive (EC) 2000-26 had to be interpreted as not requiring member states to provide that the claims representative appointed pursuant to that article could itself be sued, instead of the insurance undertaking which it represented, in the national court before which an action for damages had been brought by an injured party falling within the scope of art 1 of that directive.
Baynham (a child and protected party by her litigation friend, Sarah Jane Baynham) v Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust
Practice and procedure Personal injuries action. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, dismissed the claimant's appeal against the finding that the NHS Trust was not liable for injuries caused during her birth. In the circumstances, the judge had had to deal with complex issues in dispute between the parties' expert witnesses and all of the findings had been open to him to make on the evidence before him.
Contempt of court Contempt of court for making false statement in document verified by statement of truth without honest belief in its truth. The Queen's Bench Division granted the applicant insurer permission to pursue proceedings for contempt of court against the respondent in respect of three of the four alleged grounds. There was a strong prima facie case on those three grounds and, in the interests of justice and the overriding objective, it was proportionate for contempt proceedings to be pursued.
Conflict of laws Jurisdiction. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, dismissed the defendant's appeal against an order giving summary judgment to the claimant. The court had not erred in making a declaration that the claims made by the defendant in proceedings in Milan fell within the scope of agreements between the parties that the English courts were to have jurisdiction to determine their dispute.
Personal injuries Statement of claim. The Queen's Bench Division held that judgment would be entered for the defendant company in a case where the claimant brought a claim for personal injury arising out of an accident which he claimed to have suffered whilst working for the defendant. In the circumstances, the claimant was unable to prove that, on the balance of probabilities, he had suffered the accident as alleged in his particulars of claim.