Al-Sabah v Ali and Others: ChD 22 Jan 1999

The claimant alleged the fraudulent transfer of properties by use of a forged power of attorney.
Held: The power was fraudulent. Solicitors had acted under the instructions of the agent. The court referred to the Law Society’s practice guidance after Penn and said ‘If instructions come to a solicitor not from the client himself but from a third party claiming to represent the client, the solicitor needs to take special care to satisfy himself that the client wishes him to act, by seeking the client personally or obtaining written confirmation from the client or taking some other step which is sufficient, in the circumstances, to show that the client wants the solicitor to act for him in the matter in question.’ Nor had the solicitors verified that the vendor had received the proceeds of sale. They were liable in negligence. Any indemnity from the Land Registry would be reduced according to the contribution from the solicitors.
Ferris J
[1999] EWHC 840 (Ch), [1999] EG 11
Land Registration Act 1925 83(2)
England and Wales
CitedPenn v Bristol and West Building Society and Others ChD 19-Jun-1995
Solicitors acting for a vendor were liable to the buyers’ mortgagees for breach of warranty of authority for vendor. The solicitor was negligent in not having verified the instructions from the wife who was the joint tenant. . .
CitedGale v Superdrug Stores Plc CA 25-Apr-1996
The right to resile from an admission made in pleadings is lost only if there can be found proof of prejudice to the other party. It is a matter for the judge’s discretion.
The court set out the principles on which it should act when it is . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 24 January 2021; Ref: scu.341193