Commercial Court finds commitment letter unsigned by one party to be legally binding

The recent decision of the Commercial Court in Novus Aviation Limited v Alubaf Arab International Bank BSC(c)[2016] EWHC 1575 (Comm), serves as a cautionary tale to any financial institutions that regularly use letters of commitment. The Court found that a letter of commitment, which was expressed to be “conditional upon satisfactory review and completion of documentation“, was … Read more

Court of Appeal gives guidance for bankers’ references: what to include in a request for reference and the circumstances in which liability may be avoided

The recent decision of the Court of Appeal in Playboy Club London Ltd & Ors v Banca Nazionale Del Lavoro SPA [2016] EWCA Civ 457 is an interesting clarification of the legal principles that apply to bankers’ references. The commercial effect of the judgment is that, if a request for a bank reference: deliberately chooses not to reveal … Read more

Court of Appeal considers contractual interpretation of successive facility letters: variation, replacement or restatement?

The recent case of Urban Ventures Limited v The Black Ant Company Limited (in Administration) and Ors [2016] EWCA Civ 30 considered the question of whether new facility letters constituted further advances or whether they were simply restatements, with minor variations, of the original facility. In a brief but clear judgment, Lord Justice David Richards (with whom Lindblom … Read more

Drafting contracts: key lessons learned from 2015

Our corporate team’s annual contract law update considers a number of interesting contract law cases which highlight key points for those involved in drafting or managing contracts. The cases covered in the update deal with the interpretation of contracts, precedence, penalties, good faith obligations, notice provisions and execution formalities. In each case there is a … Read more