A company is teetering on the verge of insolvency. Its creditors are numerous. The company arranges for a third party to settle some of its debts on its behalf, but nonetheless tips over into liquidation. Can the liquidators recover the monies paid to the company’s creditors?
Boundary trees block your views, access to light, or even Wi-Fi signals. What can you do? This was the issue that came before the High Court on appeal from the District Court in Vickery v Thoroughgood  NZHC 2303.
The recent enforced receivership of national construction firm Ebert Construction has thrust receiverships back into the spotlight. With some 95 staff laid off and creditors owed around $40 million, the consequences of a high-profile company being forced into a receivership are apparent. Nonetheless, many people involved in the construction industry, and the general public, may have little knowledge of what a receivership entails.
In a judgment released on 1 May 2018 Downs J, in a 344 paragraph judgment, has found H Construction North Island Limited (formerly Hawkins Construction North Island Limited) liable for serious building defects at the Botany Downs Secondary College.
Associate Judge Sargisson's decision in Sutton v van Der AA is a timely reminder of how parties should act if they do not accept a repudiation (cancellation) of an agreement by the other party. In essence, if you do not accept the repudiation then you should conduct yourself that way by your words and actions.
Is it possible to agree in writing that you will not alter that agreement other than by writing? It is common for commercial contracts to have a clause proscribing oral variations (or variations by conduct), or at least attempting to do so. It is also increasingly common for parties to enter into dispute about the efficacy of oral variations notwithstanding the presence of such clauses. The question for practitioners is whether such clauses are enforceable.
The cost of access to the courts is commonly seen as one of, if not the most, significant barriers to access justice. This is true even for corporates. The decision in PriceWaterhouseCoopers v Walker was concerned with the validity of a litigation funding agreement between a company called SPF No. 10 Limited, the liquidators of Property Ventures Limited and related companies, Messrs Robert Walker and John Marshall.
On 14 June 2017 the Court of Appeal held that the lawyer-litigant exception is not justifiable under the specific costs rules now in place. This article summarises the rationale of the decision.
On the 17 November 2016, the Health (Fluoridation of Drinking Water) Amendment Bill (Bill) was introduced into Parliament; its aim being to amend the Health Act 1956 (Act) to enable District Health Boards (DHBs) to make decisions and give directions about the fluoridation of government drinking water supplies in their areas.
When a court makes an order, the party or parties against whom those orders are made may well query what will happen if they do not comply with those orders. The recent decision of Palmer J in Zhang v King David Investments Ltd (in Liq)  NZHC 3018 provides an example of the adverse consequences which can occur.
In McGougan and Dingle v Depuy International Limited  NZHC 2511 the High Court was required to determine the scope of the bar against claims for personal injury in s 317(1) of the Accident Compensation Act 2001 (ACA). The particular question for consideration was whether a person could bring a claim for compensatory damages (i.e. sue for damages flowing from personal injury) in New Zealand, where they have cover under the ACA, but where the conduct giving rise to the claims occurred outside of New Zealand.
On 26 October 2016, the Supreme Court released its decision in Marwood v Commissioner of Police  NZSC 139. This decision required the Court to determine whether New Zealand courts have jurisdiction to exclude improperly obtained evidence in civil proceedings and, if so, whether the jurisdiction should be exercised on the facts of the case before it.