The Court of Appeal recently determined that an 18th-century masterpiece by Sir Joshua Reynolds was an item of 'plant or machinery' and a 'wasting asset', no different from other trade equipment such as tables, chairs and cars. As a result, the gain in value realised on its sale was exempt from capital gains tax. While this decision seems counterintuitive, it rests on a close analysis of the relevant legislation.
The Supreme Court recently considered whether a party could be liable for a negligent pre-contractual misrepresentation in circumstances where the party to which the representation was originally made was not the ultimate contracting party. The result followed from a proper appreciation of the continuing nature of representations and a careful analysis of the facts.