News & Analysis as of

Contract Interpretation

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

InterConnect - Winter 2017

by Benesch on

As any mergers and acquisitions (M&A) practitioner knows, one of the keys to a successful transaction is ensuring that all of the moving pieces come together smoothly at the appointed time for closing. Regulatory issues...more

Contractual compensation scheme in long-term gas supply agreement excludes common law remedies

by Allen & Overy LLP on

Scottish Power UK Plc v BP Exploration Operating Co Ltd & ors [2016] EWCA Civ 1043, 1 November 2016 - The Court of Appeal considered the validity and scope of an industry-standard contractual provision specifying the...more

Acting the Part: Ontario Court of Appeal Clarifies Use of Future Conduct in Contractual Interpretation

On December 2, 2016, the Ontario Court of Appeal (Court) provided new guidance on the principles of contractual interpretation in the wake of the Supreme Court of Canada’s 2014 decision in Sattva Capital Corp. v. Creston Moly...more

SC Court of Appeals Rules Against Absentee Guarantor - Power of attorney afforded normal contract interpretation rules

by Nexsen Pruet, PLLC on

On August 3, 2016, the South Carolina Court of Appeals released First South Bank v. Rosenberg, Op. No. 5437 (S.C.Ct.App. filed August, 3, 2016) (Shearouse Adv.Sh. No. 31 at 75). In First Bank, the Court of Appeals considered...more

EFIH Noteholders Find Redemption for the Payment of Make-Whole Premiums

by Shearman & Sterling LLP on

On November 17, 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued a decision in which it held that holders of first lien notes and second lien notes of Energy Future Intermediate Holding Company LLC and...more

Option Contract Ruling Reversed by Texas Supreme Court.

by Gray Reed & McGraw on

North Shore Energy v. Harkins interpreted an Option Agreement between landowners and a producer over a 400 acre tract. In football they would say the Texas Supreme Court pancaked the plaintiff. In the law, some would call it...more

Ledcor: Taming Sattva’s Wild Horse of Contractual Interpretation for Standard Form Contracts

by Field Law on

The Supreme Court of Canada’s unanimous decision of Sattva v. Capital Corp. v. Creston Moly Corp., 2014 SCC 53 opened the barn door and let loose a wild horse in terms of the scope and the availability of the use of the...more

Canadian Contractual Interpretation Just Got More Difficult

by Bennett Jones LLP on

Supreme Court of Canada Revives Correctness Test for Interpreting Standard Form Contracts - There is a new exception to the new Canadian approach for reviewing the interpretation of contracts: a trial court’s...more

Mississippi Court Rejects Expansive Reading of Oral Construction Contracts

In McKean, et. al. v. Yates Engineering, 2015 Miss. App. LEXIS 446 (2015), the Court of Appeals of Mississippi affirmed the Circuit Court’s dismissal of four (4) plaintiffs’ personal injury claims stemming from the collapse...more

Class Action Arbitration after Dell Webb

Agreeing to arbitrate disputes, in lieu of traditional litigation, is not a new phenomenon. As consumers, we all contractually agree to arbitrate disputes on an almost daily basis. While not everyone may read the entire...more

Has the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Expanded the Grounds for Reviewing Arbitration Awards?

A fundamental tenet of arbitration is that arbitration awards are subject to very limited review and are rarely vacated due to an error in contract interpretation. The Illinois Uniform Arbitration Act sets forth just five...more

Cheyne Capital v. Deutsche Trustee Company: another securitisation dispute on contractual interpretation

by Dentons on

Hot on the heels of a number of recent cases on the interpretation of securitisation documents comes Cheyne Capital (Management) UK (LLP) v. Deutsche Trustee Company Limited and another. In this case the Court of Appeal...more

Louisiana Partition Agreement: You Can’t Trade What You Don’t Own

by Gray Reed & McGraw on

Square Mile Energy LLC v. Pommier considered this language in a Louisiana partition agreement: “N.B: Included in this transfer are any and all mineral rights, when available, to Roxanne and all surface rights.” Did this...more

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