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Administering Big Construction Contracts is a Job for Professionals

Construction contracts are often replete with detailed provisions in respect of time limits and payment schedules and that is one good reason why their administration is best entrusted to professionals. The point was strikingly made by one High Court case concerning a hospital refurbishment project. An NHS trust engaged a building company to perform the works at...

Company Wrongly Refused Insurance Cover Wins Test Case

Product liability and professional indemnity insurance policies invariably require that any potential claims must be swiftly notified to the insurer, but what exactly does that mean? The Court of Appeal has considered the issue in an important test case. The case concerned a company that had, via a supply chain, leased a piece of industrial equipment – a large...

Where Is a Company’s Centre of Main Interest? High Court Considers

The location of a company’s registered office is not always an indication of where it has its centre of main interest (COMI). The issue can be of crucial importance to insolvency practitioners, as one High Court case revealed. The case concerned three companies that were registered in Jersey but each of which owned a shopping centre in England. A building...

Termination of 20-Year Employment Agency Contract Leads to Court

Commercial contracts often endure harmoniously for many years, but their very longevity can make termination even more acrimonious. That was certainly so in the case of an employment agency that provided staff to a retailer for more than 20 years prior to its replacement following a tendering process. The agency had provided its services under a poorly drafted...

Food Becomes Consumers’ Property Once It Is Put On Their Plates

In a case that will be required reading for anyone working in the hospitality industry, the Court of Appeal has ruled in the context of a holiday food poisoning case that, when food is served, or taken from a buffet and put on a plate, it becomes the property of the consumer. A couple had been taken seriously ill whilst on a package holiday at a luxury hotel in...

Working at Height – Failing to Comply With the Rules Can Cost You Dear!

Working at height requires special training and protective measures. In a cautionary tale for employers who may be tempted to use unqualified staff to carry out roof repairs or other precarious tasks, a company that did just that was hit hard in the pocket after being prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive. The company had instructed three members of its...