In a recent case, a court explored whether a borrower had been validly served when the borrower had failed to comply with its contractual obligation to ensure that a process agent remained in place at all times. The court's decision shows that it will adopt a commercial approach to the interpretation of process agent clauses and, where possible, it will give effect to such clauses' primary purpose of allowing a speedy and certain means of service.
In a recent case, the court declined to continue interim injunctions granted in respect of a 'coin depot account' holding bitcoin over which the claimants asserted a proprietary right. On this occasion, the balance of convenience in respect of continuing the injunctions did not lie with the claimants, including because damages would be an adequate remedy.
A consultant was alleged to be in material breach of a consultancy contract for refusing to supply his services. He responded to a material breach notice by stating that he was willing to perform. However, the Court of Appeal held that this was insufficient to remedy the breach. According to the court, actual performance, rather than an indication of a willingness to perform, was required to remedy the material breach of contract.
Hot on the heels of its first endorsement of the use of predictive coding in the widely publicised Pyrrho decision in February 2016, the English court recently ordered the use of predictive coding in circumstances where its use was opposed. The judgment is likely to advance the discussion around the use of predictive coding, which has been one of this year's litigation hot topics.
A recent interlocutory judgment endorses, for the first time, the use of predictive coding when conducting disclosure in English civil proceedings. For those involved in complex litigation with vast numbers of documents, the judgment is likely to provide the comfort needed to allow serious consideration to be given to the use of predictive coding, which previously had perhaps been seen as a riskier and less defensible alternative to linear reviews.
The High Court recently held that the English courts have no power to extend the time for appealing against the registration of a foreign judgment under the EU Brussels Regulation. Although the new regime under the recast Brussels Regulation is now in force, the original Brussels Regulation will still apply to many cases for a number of years and this decision provides welcome clarity for such cases.
The Court of Appeal recently considered a claim for compensation under a cross-undertaking in damages by respondents to a wrongfully obtained freezing injunction. In doing so, the court gave useful guidance on how the level of such compensation should be determined and the principles governing the process.
Three recent High Court decisions illustrate the continued trend towards firm rulings relating to relief from sanctions, following the much-publicised changes in April 2013 and the seminal case of Mitchell v News Group Newspapers Ltd. Relief was denied in all three cases. This firm approach may materially change the course of proceedings where rules and orders are not respected by parties.
The High Court recently considered a preliminary issue regarding service of proceedings in a breach of warranty claim. In holding that proceedings had been validly served, the court made a number of interesting comments, particularly in relation to the service provisions in the Civil Procedure Rules and notice generally. The case underlines the importance of clearly specifying how documents are to be served and notice given.
The High Court recently gave judgment on an appeal against a master's costs decision involving a non-party costs order. The judgment is interesting for its comprehensive overview of non-party costs orders and its comments relating to the court's wide discretion as to costs in general. The decision is perhaps an example of the court's increasing appetite to encourage all parties to act in the most cost-effective manner possible.
In a recent case the Court of Appeal confirmed that in certain situations claimants may recover heads of loss that were not expressly claimed in their pleading. However, the court's decision does not mean that claims need not be properly pleaded. The court also made general comments about how notice of matters to be considered at trial may be given.
A recent High Court case provides a useful reminder of the important first hurdle that applicants must clear if they are to obtain interim relief in English courts in support of foreign proceedings under Section 25 of the Civil Jurisdiction and Judgments Act 1982. The case demonstrates that although relief under Section 25 provides a potent tool in a claimant's armoury, obtaining such relief is by no means a mere formality.
A recent Court of Appeal decision demonstrates the ongoing (if perhaps diminishing) role played by the principles that apply to the interpretation of exclusion clauses, which were laid down in Canada Steamship. The decision also acts as a reminder to take care when drafting exclusion clauses: if parties wish to exclude liability for negligence (or even intentional wrongdoing), they should ensure that they use clear, unambiguous wording.