The Court of Appeal recently held that where a contract would, on its face, be unenforceable because the parties failed to agree an essential term, the missing term cannot be implied. The dispute arose when an estate agent failed to mention what event would trigger payment of his commission until after a sale that he introduced had been agreed. The fact that the first-instance decision was overruled indicates how subjective the formation of contracts remains.
In a prime example of pro-arbitration pragmatism, the High Court recently granted an application under Section 78 of the Arbitration Act 1996 to extend the time limit within which a party can apply to the tribunal to correct an ambiguity regarding the identity of a claimant. The decision demonstrates the court's relatively pro-arbitration stance and willingness to work pragmatically to ensure the smooth operation of the arbitral process.
The High Court recently considered jurisdictional issues relating to a claim concerning the claimants' entitlement to certain shares held by a deceased businessman. An argument arose as to whether the claim fell within the scope of the 'succession' exclusion in Article 1(2)(a) of the EU Brussels Regulation. The decision confirms that exclusions in the Brussels Regulation should be construed narrowly.
The Court of Appeal has ruled that a company which provides benefits to employees of associated group companies may be regarded as an employer if it provides those benefits to reward and encourage the employees for the benefit of their employer and the group as a whole. The decision gives a wide interpretation to the meaning of 'employer' under the recast EU Brussels Regulation.