Insights: Christian Charles

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Update on clarification on Business Interruption Insurance Cover

Alexander Wildschütz, Bree Taylor, David Weare, Christian Charles, Ottilia Csoti, Nadia Osborne, Michaela Patterson, Tim Reinhard |

The FCA has now completed the first stage of providing clarity regarding the cover available to businesses affected by Covid-19. The FCA’s assessment following a review of the standard types of policies confirms our view that cover will in the majority of insurance products be limited to events of physical damage to the business premises […]


FCA asking courts for guidance on insurers' COVID-19 liability

Alexander Wildschütz, Bree Taylor, David Weare, Christian Charles, Ottilia Csoti, Nadia Osborne, Tim Reinhard, Alex Sandwell |

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has requested several insurers to clarify their position on COVID-19 related business claims before seeking guidance from the courts by way of declaratory judgment. The FCA aims to create authoritative case law in anticipation of a flood of disputes over policy wording and COVID -19 cover. This step will indeed […]


Useful guidance for insured clients dealing with COVID-19 claims

Alexander Wildschütz, Bree Taylor, David Weare, Christian Charles, Ottilia Csoti, Nadia Osborne, Tim Reinhard, Alex Sandwell |

There has been a great deal in the press recently about insurers rejecting coronavirus claims and disappointed policy-holders. Some of those speaking publicly on behalf of the insurance industry have not done much to dispel the confusion and get to the nub of the issue. The issue is not one of what the insurer “intended” […]


Fladgate promotes new dispute resolution partner

Christian Charles, Bree Taylor |

Fladgate today announces the promotion of Christian Charles to the partnership, effective from 1 April 2020. Christian has a strong track record in advising across the construction industry, from owners, funders and developers on the purchaser side, to contractors, specialists and consultants on the supply side. While advising on a broad spectrum of disputes which […]


Government provides welcome advice on fire safety in residential buildings

Michaela Patterson, Christian Charles |

The Government’s Expert Panel has now issued a consolidated advice note on fire safety following the Grenfell Tower tragedy.  The note provides guidance for building owners to act on as soon as possible, and highlights the importance of doing so promptly to ensure the safety of residents. The new guidance consolidates the 22 Advice Notes […]


Liquidated Damages: An Update

Christian Charles |

Liquidated damages clauses are commonly used in construction contracts to provide the employer with a ready-made remedy for delay. These provisions allow the employer to claim or deduct a specified sum of money without having to prove its actual loss in a claim for damages. In two recent cases , the English courts have considered the important issues in relation to the enforceability and availability of liquidated damages.


Professional negligence for gratuitous services

Christian Charles |

Background The decision follows an earlier trial of a preliminary issue in January 2016, which established that the defendant architect (Mrs Lejonvarn) owed a tortious duty of care to her friends (the Burgesses), notwithstanding the fact that there was no contract and Mrs Lejonvarn was not paid for her services. That decision was subsequently upheld […]


The end of “smash and grab”? Not so fast…

Tim Reinhard, Christian Charles |

“We are all trying to hack out a pathway through a dense thicket of amended legislation, burgeoning case law and ever-changing standard form contracts.” Sir Rupert Jackson, S&T (UK) Ltd v Grove Developments Ltd [2018] EWCA Civ 2448 In a highly anticipated and significant judgment, the Court of Appeal has upheld the decision of Coulson […]


Found you! – Peering behind the corporate veil

Tim Reinhard, Christian Charles |

For over a century, it has been well settled in English law that a company has its own legal personality entirely separate from that of its shareholders and directors who are, by virtue of the “corporate veil”, protected from being personally liable for the company’s debts and other obligations. Attempts to look behind the corporate […]


Limitation for contribution claims – take care

Christian Charles |

In commercial disputes, it is not unusual for the claimant’s losses to be caused (or contributed to) by a number of different parties.  For instance, the claimant may have elected to pursue the party with the deepest pockets, or the loss may have been caused by one of the defendant’s subcontractors.  In such circumstances, the […]


Adjudication: “pay now argue later”

Christian Charles |

A recent case has clarified when a party may be able to raise a substantive defence to adjudication enforcement. The courts have long made it clear that they will enforce adjudicators’ decisions save in the most exceptional circumstances. In the context of enforcement proceedings, the courts are not concerned with whether the adjudicator got the […]


The new Pre-Action Protocol for construction and engineering disputes

Christian Charles |

Background Most construction and engineering disputes are settled by negotiation and without the need for formal dispute proceedings.  Where disputes cannot be resolved in this way, a claimant will usually have the option of pursuing its entitlements through statutory or contractual adjudication.  In some cases, however, litigation or arbitration will be necessary. Before commencing court […]