Contract Disputes

Dispute over car ownership

We acted for the owner of a valuable classic sports car. The Police alerted the owner to an alleged historical theft of the vehicle and a claim to title of the car by another person.

Although the other person claimed ownership of the vehicle, a favorable settlement was reached whereby the other person paid full market value for the vehicle to our client in return for the vehicle.

Contractual dispute

We acted for a number of doctors in a contractual dispute with a project manager they had retained to assist them with the planning, development and construction of a new medical centre. The project was highly complex involving professionals from many different fields.

A dispute arose when the health authority issued correspondence suggesting that there was significant risk that public funding would not be available to build the health centre due to a change in policy.  The project manager then claimed various fees and expenses from the doctors, which were disputed under contract law.

After negotiations and a mediation meeting, a settlement was reached whereby the doctors paid a relatively low sum to the project manager in full and final settlement of the claim. The settlement reflected the risks and costs of further litigation to our client.

Commercial contract dispute

We acted for a foreign company in a claim against a French multi-national company for damages for breach of contract.

The dispute involved initial considerations of which countries law was applicable, concluding that English law applied. There were a large numbers of documents in three languages, including English. The latter, resulting in multi-million pound losses to our client, unlawfully terminated our client’s contract with the French company. Surprisingly, although the contract had run for a number of years prior to its termination and generated millions of pounds of turnover for our client, there was no written contract document between the parties! As a result, the terms of the contract were hotly disputed by the parties and complex arguments were run in relation to implied terms and custom and usage in that particular industry.

The opponent attempted to strike out most of the client’s claim by way of an application for Summary Judgement in the High Court where we had issued a court claim. This application failed with the result that the opponent had to pay a large costs penalty to our client. Thereafter, faced with a claim that was heading towards trial, the chief executives of the companies reached a financial settlement, which involved a payment of damages to our client company and importantly allowed the parties to continue to trade in the future.

Contractual dispute between professionals

We acted for a professional person who sold his business but continued to work as a Consultant for the new owners. After his retirement, our client brought a claim against the new owners for non-payment of sums, which were due to him.

The documentary evidence of the claim was bulky and complex and it was necessary to instruct a forensic accountant to consider the documentary evidence and prepare a report setting out the basis and value of the claim, which involved work done over a number of years. After service of the expert accountancy evidence, a favourable settlement was reached during court proceedings with payment of damages and costs to our client.

Claim against Director under personal guarantee

We acted for a director in a company, which became insolvent and a personal guarantee given by our client was called in by creditors.

The claim against our client, together with interest approached one million pounds. After Court proceedings had been issued and a mediation meeting had taken place, a favourable settlement was obtained by our client whereby he paid only a modest fraction of his potential liability under the guarantee.

Such a favourable result was obtained due to certain irregularities when the personal guarantee was set up, resulting in a commercial settlement being reached, due to the risks envisaged by both sides, should the case proceed to trial.

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John Simister
Associate Solicitor, Head of Litigation

John heads and manages the Litigation team. He deals with all aspects of litigation, from initial instructions to final court hearings, acts as an advocate and instructs barristers when... Read more

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