Doncaster Pharmaceuticals Group Ltd and Others v The Bolton Pharmaceutical Company 100 Ltd: CA 26 May 2006

Appeals were made against interlocutory injunctions for alleged trade mark infringement.
Held: The court should hesitate about making a final decision for summary judgment without a trial, even where there is no obvious conflict of fact at the time of the application, where reasonable grounds exist for believing that a fuller investigation into the facts of the case would add to or alter the evidence available to a trial judge and so affect the outcome of the case.
Mummery LJ warned against the risk of injustice: ‘Summary judgment procedures, which are designed for the swift disposal of straight forward cases without trial, are only available where the applicant demonstrates that the defence (or the claim, as the case may be) has no ‘real’ prospect of success and if there is no other compelling reason why the case or issue should be disposed of at a trial: CPR Part 24.2 . Thus, without the assistance of pre-trial procedures, such as disclosure of documents, and without the benefit of trial procedures, such as cross examination, the court’s function is to decide whether the defendant’s prospect of successfully establishing the facts relied on by him is ‘real’, that is more than ‘fanciful’ or ‘merely arguable.’ and
‘ I also wish to say a few words about the litigation expectations and tactics of claimants and defendants. Claimants start civil proceedings (including intellectual property actions) in the expectation that they will win and often in the belief that the defendant has no real prospect of success. So the defence put forward may be seen as a misconceived, costly and time-wasting ploy designed to dodge an inevitable judgment for as long as possible. There is also a natural inclination on the part of optimistic claimants to go for a quick judgment, if possible, thereby avoiding the trouble, expense and delay involved in preparing for and having a trial.
Everyone would agree that the summary disposal of rubbishy defences is in the interests of justice. The court has to be alert to the defendant, who seeks to avoid summary judgment by making a case look more complicated or difficult than it really is.
The court also has to guard against the cocky claimant, who, having decided to go for summary judgment, confidently presents the factual and legal issues as simpler and easier than they really are and urges the court to be ‘efficient’ ie produce a rapid result in the claimant’s favour.
In handling all applications for summary judgment the court’s duty is to keep considerations of procedural justice in proper perspective. Appropriate procedures must be used for the disposal of cases. Otherwise there is a serious risk of injustice.’
Mr Justice Longmore Lord Justice Mummery Mr Justice Lewison
[2006] EWCA Civ 661, [2007] FSR 3, [2006] ETMR 65
Bailii
Civil Procedure Rules 24.2
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedNigeria v Santolina Investment Corp and others ChD 7-Mar-2007
The federal government sought to recover properties from the defendants which it said were the proceeds of corrupt behaviour by the principal defendant who had been State Governor of a province. The claimant sought summary judgment.
Held: . .
CitedPegasus Management Holdings Sca and Another v Ernst and Young (A Firm) and Another ChD 11-Nov-2008
The claimants alleged professional negligence in advice given by the defendant on a share purchase, saying that it should have been structured to reduce Capital Gains Tax. The defendants denied negligence and said the claim was statute barred.
CitedMexfield Housing Co-Operative Ltd v Berrisford ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant appealed against refusal of a summary order for possession of the defendant tenant’s house for arrears of rent. The arrears arose through delay in payment of Housing Benefit, and all arrears had been cleared by the hearing of the . .
CitedPink Floyd Music Ltd and Another v EMI Records Ltd ChD 11-Mar-2010
The claimant sought summary judgment for a claim under Licensing agreements under which the defendants had marketed and sold the claimant’s products. The remaining disputes concerned differences as to royalties from digital downloads sold through . .
CitedSel-Imperial Ltd v The British Standards Institution ChD 23-Apr-2010
The defendant had developed a draft standard for automotive body repairs. It included a requirement that any replacement parts must be either the manufacturer’s own or certified under a recognised conformity certification scheme. The claimant . .
CitedParties Named In Schedule A v Dresdner Kleinwort Ltd and Another QBD 28-May-2010
The defendant merchant banks resisted two group claims for annual bonuses for 2008 made by the employee claimants. They now sought summary judgment against the claims. The employer had declared a guaranteed minimum bonus pool available to make the . .
CitedMeakin v British Broadcasting Corporation and Others ChD 27-Jul-2010
The claimant alleged that the proposal for a game show submitted by him had been used by the various defendants. He alleged breaches of copyright and of confidence. Application was now made to strike out the claim. . .
CitedAllen v Bloomsbury Publishing Plc and Another ChD 14-Oct-2010
allen_bloomsburyChD10
The claimant sought damages alleging breach of copyright by the defendant author saying she had copied large parts of the claimant’s work in her book ‘Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’. The defendant now sought summary judgment, saying the action . .
CitedEasyair Ltd (T/A Openair) v Opal Telecom Ltd ChD 2-Mar-2009
The court considered an application for summary judgment.
Held: Lewison J set out the principles: ‘the court must be careful before giving summary judgment on a claim. The correct approach on applications by defendants is, in my judgment, as . .
CitedGuthrie v Morel and Others ChD 5-Nov-2015
The will had failed clearly to identify a property in Spain the subject of a bequest.
Held: Summary judgment was given. ‘It seems to me to be clear that the deceased intended by his Will to deal with his entire estate and that he intended the . .
CitedBhayani and Another v Taylor Bracewell Llp IPEC 22-Dec-2016
Distinction between reputation and goodwill
The claimant had practised independently as an employment solicitor. For a period, she was a partner with the defendant firm practising under the name ‘Bhayani Bracewell’. Having departed the firm, she now objected to the continued use of her name, . .
CitedHRH The Duchess of Sussex v Associated Newspapers Ltd ChD 11-Feb-2021
The claimant complained that the defendant newspaper had published contents from a letter she had sent to her father. The court now considered her claims in breach of privacy and copyright, and her request for summary judgment.
Held: Warby J . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 12 February 2021; Ref: scu.242215