On Shaky Ground: the Robin Rigg case

MT Højgaard A/S v E.On Climate & Renewables UK Robin Rigg East Ltd & Anor [2017] UKSC 59

The proceedings in this case arose from the fact that the foundation structures of two offshore wind farms, which were designed and installed by MT Højgaard A/S (“MTH”), failed shortly after completion of the project. The issue for the court to determine was whether MTH was liable for this failure.

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Filed under Breach of contract, Contractual interpretation

Judgment alert: UKSC decision on design and installation of windfarm foundations

MT Højgaard A/S (Respondent) v E.ON Climate and Renewables UK Robin Rigg East Ltd and another (Appellants)

The issue in this case is whether a contract for the design and installation of foundations for an offshore windfarm in the Solway Firth imposed a fitness for purpose obligation on the contractor amounting to a warranty that said foundations would have a service life of 20 years.

The UK Supreme Court unanimously allowed the appeal, holding that the windfarm foundations neither had a lifetime of twenty years, nor was their design fit to ensure one.

Access the UKSC judgment  here

For a non-PDF version of the judgment, please visit: BAILII

For Court’s press summary, click here

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Filed under Breach of contract, Contractual interpretation

Like Shattered Glass: 125 OBS (Nominees) & Another v Lend Lease Construction (Europe) Ltd and Another [2017]

A contractor was ordered to pay £14.7 million in damages following a failure of toughened glass used to clad a central London office block. The breakages were caused by the contractor’s breach of its contractual obligations to heat soak all of the glass.
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Filed under Breach of contract, Contractual interpretation

Goodlife Foods Ltd v Hall Fire Protection Ltd [2017] EWHC 767 (TCC)

This is a useful decision of the Court upholding the application of a broadly drafted clause excluding property damage liability in negligence on the part of a supplier of a fire prevention mechanism which failed.  Continue reading

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Filed under Breach of contract, Contractual interpretation, Exclusion clauses, Fires

Electronic filing from 25 April 2017 for all Rolls Building jurisdictions

From 25 April 2017 when term-time resumes, it will no longer be possible to issue claims or applications, or to file documents, on paper; all issuing and filings in any of the jurisdictions of the Rolls Building instead have to be made through the website.

The website can be accessed via this link.

 

The Rolls Building jurisdictions relevant to property damage include:

  • TCC
  • Admiralty and Mercantile Court
  • Commercial Court

the other jurisdictions (less relevant to property damage) include the Chancery Division, IPEC, Patents Court, Financial List and the Bankruptcy and Companies Court.

 

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Filed under Procedure

Theoretical Justifications for the “Reliance Bar”: Howmet Ltd v Economy Devices Ltd.

Neil Moody QC and Timothy Killen have published an article on the decision in Howmet in the February/March edition of the Construction Law Journal (Citation (2017) 33 Const L.J. Issue 1), published by Sweet and Maxwell.

You can read it here.

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Filed under Causation, Intervening Acts

New Courts: Business and Property Courts

From the press release on the Judiciary website:

“From June of this year, the specialist civil courts are to be known as the “Business and Property Courts of England and Wales”.

The Business and Property Courts will be the new name for England and Wales’ international dispute resolution jurisdictions and will act as a single umbrella for business specialist courts across England and Wales.

It will encompass the specialist courts and lists of the High Court:

  • the Commercial Court, (including the Admiralty Court),
  • the Technology and Construction Court (“TCC”), and
  • the courts of the Chancery Division (including those dealing with financial services, intellectual property, competition, and insolvency).

The new arrangements will preserve the familiar practices and procedures of these courts, whilst allowing for more flexible cross-deployment of judges with suitable expertise and experience to sit on appropriate business and property cases.”

 

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Filed under Procedure

Floods and expert evidence: Oldcorn v Southern Water Services Ltd

Oldcorn v Southern Water Services Ltd [2017] EWHC 62 TCC 

This case sets clear limits on the Marcic defence and confirms that where a sewerage undertaker’s owes a private law duty of care, it may not be able to rely upon the more limited Leakey “measured” duty of care.

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Filed under Causation, Duty of Care, Expert Evidence, Floods, Nuisance

Expert reliance: Wheeldon Brothers Waste Ltd v Millennium Insurance Co Ltd

Wheeldon Brothers Waste Ltd v Millennium Insurance Co Ltd [2017] EWHC 218 TCC

This case involved a fire at the Claimant’s waste processing plant. The Claimant sought to recover approximately £1.5 million in damages from the Defendant insurers. During the first CMC, the Claimant sought to prohibit the Defendant insurer from relying on their chosen fire expert, Mr Steven Braund, a forensic expert employed by Hawkins.

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Filed under Causation, Expert Evidence, Fires

Amendments to Pleadings: Al Nahda Insulation Contracting LLC & Another v Tremco Illbruck Export Ltd

In Al Nahda, the TCC has maintained its strict approach to late amendments, and those which it does not consider have any real prospect of success. Continue reading

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Filed under Particulars of Claim, Pleadings, Procedure, Statements of Case