News & Analysis as of

Contract Interpretation

Construction Contracts And Arbitration Provisions: Is The Word “May” Mandatory? Maybe!

by Burr & Forman on

You don’t always say what you mean. And you don’t always mean what you say. In construction contracts, parties attempt to use plain and ordinary words to describe their respective obligations....more

Can Your Email Exchange Become A Binding Contract?

Certain contracts must be in writing and signed. Among them are contracts for the sale of real estate, contracts for the sale of goods for a price in excess of $500, and contracts to “answer for the debt of another,” such as...more

Court Of Chancery Declines To Enforce Agreement To Negotiate

by Morris James LLP on

Windsor I LLC v. CWCapital Asset Management LLC, C.A. No. 12977-CB (Del. Ch. July 31, 2017) - In this decision, the Court of Chancery declines to enforce an agreement to negotiate, applying Maryland law. ...more

Alberta Court of Appeal reaffirms importance of considering factual matrix in contractual interpretation

by DLA Piper on

The rules of contractual interpretation have evolved significantly in the last several years in Canada. At one time, the circumstances surrounding the preparation of a contract were rarely considered by the courts; the courts...more

Standstill agreements: difference between suspension or extension

by Allen & Overy LLP on

Parties often enter into standstill agreements when approaching the expiry of a limitation period. This case shows the difference between suspending time and extending time for the purposes of limitation in a standstill...more

Keep Viking Pump in Your Long-Tail Claim Toolbox

“Long-tail” claims involve personal injury or property damage from alleged exposure to injury-causing products, such as asbestos or PFCs, over a number of years and multiple policy periods. Courts in various jurisdictions use...more

The rules of interpretation: a seller indemnity in a share purchase agreement

by Dentons on

The Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal over the meaning of an indemnity in a share purchase agreement, and in delivering its judgment has given guidance on the rules of contractual interpretation....more

Legal Notebook: All road(way)s lead to a contractual dispute

by DLA Piper on

The recent decision of RV Pty Limited v Connector Park Pty Ltd (No 2) [2017] TASSC 22 concerned a dispute between two land development companies in relation to a contract which required the construction of an access road. The...more

Burr Alert: This Old Waiver? I’ve Had it for Years

by Burr & Forman on

The Georgia Supreme Court has further eroded the viability of the Georgia confirmation statute with its recent decision in York v. RES-GA LJY, LLC. In York, the Supreme Court affirmed the lower court’s application of last...more

The Appeal in Teal: SCC Majority Restores Commercial Arbitrator's Award

by Bennett Jones LLP on

The Supreme Court has again restricted the scope of appeals from decisions of commercial arbitrators, this time upholding an arbitrator's award of compensation under a British Columbia statute by a close majority....more

Finality in commercial arbitration further affirmed by the Supreme Court of Canada

by Dentons on

Confirming its 2014 decision in Sattva Capital Corp. v. Creston Moly Corp.1 (Sattva), the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC), in another appeal from the Province of British Columbia, has held that there is limited jurisdiction for...more

Alberta Court of Appeal Releases Landmark Decision on Contractual Interpretation

On May 26, 2017, the Alberta Court of Appeal (Court) released a landmark decision in IFP Technologies (Canada) Inc. v. EnCana Midstream and Marketing, which will impact principles of contractual interpretation in...more

West Virginia Court Pivots Toward Industry in Recent Post-Production Deduction Case

by McGuireWoods LLP on

A recent decision by the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has called into question its own precedent on the permissibility of post-production deductions and the calculation of oil and natural gas royalties, reversing...more

Supreme Court confirms that both commercial common sense and the natural meaning of the words matter in contractual interpretation

by Allen & Overy LLP on

In Wood v Capita Insurance Services Ltd [2017] UKSC 24, the Supreme Court again examined the principles of contractual interpretation. In Arnold v Britton the Supreme Court had cautioned against commercial common sense...more

Reasonable endeavours and whether contract requirement was ‘futile’

by Allen & Overy LLP on

In Astor Management AG & anr v Atalaya Mining PLC & ors [2017] EWHC 425 (Comm) the High Court found that even arguably pointless contractual provisions must be met in the context of a condition precedent to payment of...more

Generator Receives Another Shot at Obtaining CAISO Congestion Revenue Rights

by Stoel Rives LLP on

On April 4, 2017 (NextEra Desert Center Blythe, LLC v. FERC, Case No. 16-1003 (“NextEra”)), the DC Circuit issued a decision remanding back to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) orders denying NextEra Desert...more

The $100 Million Question is Answered With Extrinsic Evidence, Not Contra Proferentem

by Murtha Cullina on

Last October, we reported on the issues at stake in Gold v. Rowland, the class action that claims that Connecticut state employees were members entitled to shares of stock when their insurer, Anthem, demutualized in 2001. The...more

Blog: When Approval for a Drug “Indication” Gets Murky: Drafting Milestones to Avoid Disputes

by Cooley LLP on

According to a recent study by SRS of recent private life sciences deals, disputes over earn-outs arose in about one-third (36%) of all milestones that were expected to be hit by September 2016. While most disputes were not...more

Court Gives Great Weight to Pre-Merger Negotiations in Interpreting an Ambiguous Contract

by Morris James LLP on

Contract interpretation is a staple of litigation in the Delaware Court of Chancery. Disputes over the meaning of commercial contracts, foundational documents such as certificates of incorporation or bylaws or agreements...more

How a Comma Could Cost You

by Davis Brown Law Firm on

Few people actually remember all those pesky grammar rules we learned in school. But you can bet that a company in Maine will not be forgetting its comma rules anytime soon....more

Delaware Chancery Court Focuses On Negotiation History In Denying Former Securityholders A Milestone Payment Based On The...

by Shearman & Sterling LLP on

On March 15, 2017, Chancellor Andre G. Bouchard of the Delaware Court of Chancery decided, post-trial, that a biopharmaceutical company was not required to pay a $50 million “milestone payment” under the terms of a merger...more

FRANCHISEE 101: A Perpetual Franchise

by Lewitt Hackman on

When a franchisee "buys into" a franchise system by paying an "initial franchise fee," the franchisee is typically purchasing the right to use the franchisor's trademarks and business system for an initial term that lasts a...more

Court Of Chancery Rejects Jurisdiction Based On Contract Interpretation

by Morris James LLP on

As this decision explains, the Court of Chancery will not have jurisdiction based on the claim an injunction is needed to force a defendant to comply with the proper interpretation of a contract....more

Reliance on the Employment Contract–AKA "But It's Not Fair"

by Bennett Jones LLP on

Canadian courts have often been swayed by arguments of fairness from plaintiff employees regarding the interpretation of their employment contracts in an employment dispute. There has been a general judicial recognition of...more

Significant Government Contract Litigation: A Year in Review

Last year provided a number of important claims and cases that further developed various aspects of litigation regarding the Contract Disputes Act (CDA). The major issues raised in some of the more notable claims include...more

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