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Company Shares Held in Trust – High Court Identifies Pitfall

Company shares are often held in trust by nominees for the benefit of others, but it is vital to remember that it is only the former who have a legal right to litigate on behalf of the trust. The High Court made that point in the case of a businessman who claimed to have been fraudulently deprived of shares that he beneficially owned. The businessman claimed...

Contract Arbitrators’ Factual Findings Accorded Judicial Respect

The decisions of contract arbitrators are accorded due respect by the courts and only in exceptional cases will judges go behind their findings of fact. That point could not have been more clearly made than in one High Court case concerning an allegedly defective shipment of fertiliser. The buyers of 4,500 metric tonnes of fertiliser had paid more than Euros...

Fair Treatment of Minority Shareholders – High Court Ruling

Minority shareholders may not have control of companies but they are entitled to fair treatment and to have a role in decision making. The High Court made that point in ordering that a businessman who was excluded from his managerial position in a company must be bought out of his 49 per cent shareholding for over £300,000. Half of the shares in the company...

Motor Insurers Must Pay £2 Million Cost of Factory Fire

In a decision of importance to the insurance industry, the Court of Appeal has ruled that motor insurers must cover the seven-figure cost of a catastrophic factory fire that broke out whilst a mechanic was doing a welding job on his car. The man worked for an engineering company and, in his own time, was welding a plate onto the bottom of his car when a spark...

Compulsory Purchase and Surplus Land – Court of Appeal Test Case

Large infrastructure projects often require the compulsory purchase of swathes of privately-owned land by public authorities – but what happens if land so acquired turns out not to be needed after all? The Court of Appeal tackled that important issue in the context of London’s Crossrail development. Using powers under The Crossrail Act 2008, extremely...