Business Law Case Revision 3
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Brace V Calder
Before: embrace. Now: colder/calder.
- Facts : Clm was employed by a four man partnership for 2 years. The partners fell out and two left, dissolving the original partnership. Two of the partners reformed the partnership and offered to employ Clm on exactly same terms as before. He refused and sued for BOC regarding his original 2 years contract.
- Decision : BOC had in fact happened. Because the Clm refused to accept alternative employment to mitigate his loss, he was only entitled nominal damages. He lost the right to claim damages.
Araci V Fallon
: Fallon, a flat-racing jockey, signed a 1 month contract with Araci (owner of a horse) agreeing to ride it at any race event when requsted by Araci. Contract also stipulated that Fallon would not ride a rival horse in any race where he had been asked to ride Araci's horse. A few months later, Araci asked Fallon to ride his horse in the prestigious Derby race. One week before the race, Fallon informed Araci that he would be riding another horse instead. Araci applied to court for an injunction to prevent Fallon from riding the other horse. Case was heard by Court of Appeal on morning of race.
- Decision : Courts agreed to grant injunction to Araci on the grounds that damages would not be an adeq remedy for the following reasons:
- - value of loss would be very difficult to assess (requires speculation on race)
- - financial reward was not the only benefit of winning the Derby (+prestige!)
- - risk that Def would not be able to meet any award of damages
Significance of Williams V Roffey
Wherever the person making such a promise gains an extra benefit in return for paying someone to do what they are already bound to do under an existing contract, this promise will be enforced, regardless of consideration for the second agreement.
(Stilk V Myrick doesn't agree with this)
-> Significant purpose: where a party freely and without undue pressure
makes a promise in a commercial context, the party will be boung by the promise regardless of consideration from te other party.
Stretch V UK
: City council granted Clm a 22 year lease of a light industrial estate. The contract contained an option to renew the lease at the end of the cintract for another 21 years. This ensured adequate return on investment for the Clm. Hwr, when he requested this, Clm was told the option was no longer available as the Council had exceeded their powers when granting the original lease.
- Clm exhausted UK rights of appeal and appealer to the European Courts of Human Rights.
- Decision : Although the Council would be acting ilegally if it were to renew the lease, it was wrong that Clm was left w/o remedy due to Council failure. He was awarded damages for Breach of Right to Property.
Stretched it all the way to EU Court
Candler V Crane
: Clm invested in a number of companies owned by My Ogilvie. He did so after having been shown a financial statement of those companies, made for this purpose. Hwr, it accounted for assets not truly owned by the firm, and Clm lost his money in this investment. Sued accountants for negligence.
- Decision : Although Fin. Stat. was incorrect, judges decided that the firm did not owe Mr Candler duty of care. Not liable.
- Dissenting Judgment of Lord Denning : Accounting firm did owe Candler a duty of care. They do not only owe it to their clients, but to all those whom they know will rely on their accounts in the transactions for which those accounts were prepared.
Hedley Burne V Heller & Partners Ltd
: Clm asked their bank to investigate E Ltd to see if it was a good credit risk. Their bank asked E Ltd's bank, the Defs, who answered positively and stated the information was given "without responsibility". Clms extended credit to E Ltd. Hwr, the latter went into liquidation before it could repay the money back, and Clms sued Defs for negligence.
- Decision : Appeal to HoL was dismissed: not liable because of the exclusion cause. Would have been liable otherwise.
- Judicial precedent significance : First time HoL made it clear that liability for negligent misstatement could exist in case where Clm asked for afvice and had a right to receive it.
He got burned because they said w/o resp
Caparo Industries PLC V Dickman and Others
: Caparo, which already held shares in Fidelity PLC acquired controlling interest in the company after reading through their Fin. Stat., drafted by the Defs, and relying on them. These were wrong and Caparo sued for negligence. Had they known the reality, they wouldn't have invested so much.
- Decision : The Defs did not know Caparo would rely on their statements and thus only owed DOC to the company. Not liable.
When will a Def giving negligent advice be liable in the tort of misstatement?
- 1 - Def knows Clm will receive advice
- 2 - Def knows transactions planned by Clm
- 3 - Def knows Clm is likely to rely on that advice
R V Clegg
: Def was a soldier. He was manning a vehicle checkpoint and asled an approaching vehicle to stop. Driver mistakenly spead up and crashed through the checkpoint barrier. As it drove away, Clegg fired at the car thus killing a back seat passenger
- Decision : Charged with murder. Appealed. Court of appeal expressed sympathy with Def but applying common law, they held that the sentence should stand. (Expressed view that law in that area should be improved. Manslaughter not murder if on duty). Appealed. HoL held down murder conviction and proposed Parliament should review area.
IRC V Hinchy
: According to the Law, a person who fails to deliver a correct tax return must forfeit the sum of £20 and treble the tax which he ought to be charged under the Act. Def failed to disclose part of his Post office interest. Question before court: does he have to pay treble what is left to pay, or treble the whole sum?
- Decision : According to the literal rule of interpretation, Def was liable to pay £20 and treble the whole tax chargeable for the year. "Undisclosed income" was not specified.
: According to the Law, when a person dies intestate, their estate goes to their next of kin. Sigsworth killed his mother who died intestate. Being her only child, and only living relative, he was intitled to inherit the property.
- Decision : Under the Golden Rule, he was not allowed to inherit the money.
wasn't WORTHy of the money
Smith V Hughes
: Although prostitution is not illegal, soliciting on the street is. Def was a prostitute who attracted customers from her bedroom window by calling them. She was charged with "soliciting on the street".
- Decision : The purpose of the legislation was to prevent street nuisance. Although she wasn't on it, her action were bothering people there. Under the Golden Rule, she was found liable.
R V Human Fertilisation Embryology Authority
: Women wanted to be inseminated with sperm from her deceased husband. According to Law, the donor is required to provide written consent, which had led the Human Fertilisation Authority to refuse.
- Decision : High Court held that the words in the statute were clear and unambiguous. The Golden Rule couldn't apply, because the result was not absurd. The appeal was dismissed.
Attorney General's Reference (No1)
: Def wished to purchase a particular company but before purchase was complete, advisor told him that the company had agreed to accept a rival offer instead. Def immediately began purchasing shares in the company and selling them for a significant profit. He was charged with insider dealing.
- Decision : Insider dealing is defined as entenring into transactions unsing info not known to the public, which has been knowingly obtained. Def argued he just received the info. Obtain means "procure by own efforts" or "acquire without efforts". The purpose of the statute was to prevent anyone with inside info from entering into deals, so under the Mischief Rule, he was found guilty.
Evans V Cross
: According to the Law, it is a criminal offence to fail to comply with an indication given by a traffic sign (defined by all devices for the guidance or direction of persons using roads). Highway authority had painted a while line along the center of a road in order to keep traffic on one side. Def was prosecuted when spotted driving on the wrong side. But was the white line an indication given by a traffic sign?
- Decision : Courts used intrinsic aid and interpreted general words according to the words that preceded them. A physical sign is not a white line. Not guilty.
shouldn't have CROSSed the line
Ross V Caunters
: Solicitor drafted a will and permitted the spouse of the beneficiary to witness it, without warning the testator that that would mean his Spouse would lose her gift. When the testator died, the beneficiary was not due to inherit the her gift and she sued the solicitor in tort of negligence.
- Decision : Solicior owed Clm DOC as he knew the wife would lose her inheritance and he knew that his expertise was being relied on. Liable.
Ross. Should have told her. FRIENDS.
White V Jones
: Elderly man fell out with his two daughters and cut them out of his will. Later on they reunited and he instructed his solicitor to draft a new will, giving them each a substantial amount of money. Due to unnecessary delays on the solicitor's part, the testator died before the will was drafted and the daughters failed to inherit the money. They sued the solicitor in negligence.
- Decision : By agreeing to redraft, solicitor had accepted responsibility for the creation of a valid will. He knew the daughters would suffer financial losses if he didn't. He owed them DOC and had breached that duty. Liable.
Common V Civil Law
Civil law: law is devised by designated law making bodies and written down as rules for soc to abide by
Common law: law is created by deciding cases and recoding the reasons for the decision
Offence against society.
- Offender is prosecuted. He is found guilty or not.
- Innocent until proven guilty. Standard of proof: beyong reasonable doubt.
- Magistrates Court (summary offences)
- Justices of the Peace
- Crown Court (indictable offences)
- Judge and Jury
Dispute between individuals and businesses.
- Claimant (Plaintiff) sued Defendant. The latter is found liable or not.
- Burden of proof is on Clm to prove on a balance of probabilities (more likely than not).
- County Court (district Judge)
- High Court (High Court Judge)
Different types of appeal
- - against conviction CROWN COURT
- - against sentence CROWN COURT
- - against point of law HIGH COURT
Normal Court Rule of Evidence
Court must not be informed of Def's previous criminal history.
Under section 11 of Civil Evidence Act, court can be informed if Def is also convicted of criminal offences as a result of the incident.
Criminal AND Civil jurisdiction
Max penalty: 12 months inprisonment or £5,000 fine.
Deal with domestic and matrimonial matters, licensing issues, enforce payment of public utilities.
Each major town has its own Crown Court
Receives appeals against sentence or convition, or from youth court.
Contract and tort claim < £25,000
- Contract and tort < £50,000
- Personal Injury Claims < £50,000
- Equity matters < £30, 000
- Small Claims < £5,000
- Divorce, family matters, bankruptcy, winding up of companies
Civil and criminal jurisdiction at first instance and appeal
- -Divisional Court
- Appeals from County Courts or tribunals
- -Administrative Court
- Appeals from lower courts
- Wills, patents and copyrights, company law and partnerships
- -Family division
- -Queen's Bench Division
- Contract and Tort
Problems: cost, time, delay, stress
- Introduces CPR (Civil Procedure Rules)
- - encourages out of court settlement
- - introduces offers to settle (alt to payments into court)
- - new civil litigation procedures
- (claim<£5,000 small claims track
- £5,000<claim<£25,000 fast track
- claim>£25,000 multi-track)
Generally only hears appeals when a point of law of general public importance is involved
European Court of Justice (La Hague)
If case heard in UK courts involves a point of EU law, the UK Judge may refer the case to the ECJ to give an answer to the point of EU Law only.
Binding precedent terms
Ratio decidendi: Judge's reason for deciding in favour of one party or another. Binding decision/precedent.
Obiter dicta: additional comments
Term for case altering on appeal
Reversing the decision
Term for changing or removing a precedent
Overruling the precedent
Bill issuance procedure
- 1 I. Green Paperconsultation document which sets out proposals for legislation and invites comments from interested parties
- II. White Paperdocument which sets out Gov's firm proposal for legislation
- 2. I. First readingFormal Bill presentation with full title
- II. Second readingDebate on Bill policy
- III. Committee stageCommittee of 20-50 MPs discuss detailed wording and propose amendments
- IV. Report StageAmendments are reported to whole House of Commons for their conscent and consideration
- V. Third ReadingFinal debate on bill - only minor amendments
VI. House of Lords
Same procedure. If amend -> return to HoC for approval. HoC has last word.
- VII. Royal AscentPaper exercice. Becomes a law when RA or on date specified.
Entores Ltd V Miles Far Eastern Corporation
: Def accepted a contract and informed Clm by tax from Holland. Howr, the contract was only valid if done in London. Clm pursues Def for BOC.
- Decision : Since instant communication was used, the contract was made where it was received: London
Northland Airlines Ltd V Dennis Ferranti Meters Ltd
: Ferranti offers to sell Northland an aircraft for £27,000 on condition of depositing £5,000 in an account. Northland accepts the offer, deposits the money in the account and added a delivery date to the contract. Offeror did not consider this to be acceptance and sold elsewhere. Offeree sued for BOC
- Decision : Not liable, because offeree made a counter offer by changing the terms.
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