Fillite (Runcorn) Ltd v Aqua-Lift: CA 1989

The court considered whether claims arising from misrepresentation or breach of a collateral contrat were claims arising ‘under’ the contract so as to be governed by the disputes provisions in it.
Held: The disputes did not arise ‘under the contract as such. Slade LJ said that the phrase ‘under a contract’ was not wide enough to include disputes which did not concern obligations created by or incorporated in the contract. Nourse LJ agreed.
Nourse LJ: ‘The preposition ‘under’ presupposes that the noun which it governs already has some existence. It operates in time as well as in space. I think that it means ‘as a result of’ and with reference to’. The disputes as to express or implied terms in the composite Peterborough contract arise both as a result of and with reference to that contract and are therefore within clause 14 of the heads of agreement. The disputes as to negligent misstatement, misrepresentation under the misrepresentation Act 1967 and collateral warranty or contract, while they may in a loose sense be said to arise with reference to the contract, cannot be said to arise as a result of it. They all relate to matters which either preceded the contract or were at best contemporaneous with it. Those disputes are therefore outside clause 14 and I agree with Slade LJ that the material words are not wide enough to include disputes which do not concern obligations created by or incorporated in the contract.’
Slade LJ held the phrase ‘disputes arising under a contract’ to be not wide enough to include disputes which do not concern obligations created by or incorporated in that contract.


Nourse LJ, Slade LJ


(1989) CLR 66, (1989) 26 Const LR 66, (1989) 45 BLR 27

Cited by:

CitedFiona Trust and Holding Corp and others v Privalov and others ComC 20-Oct-2006
The parties disputed whether their claim should be arbitrated.
Held: A claim as to whether the contract itself had been made was not one which could be arbitrated by provisions in that contract. It does not arise ‘under’ the contract. The . .
CitedFiona Trust and Holding Corporation and others v Privalov and others CA 24-Jan-2007
The court was asked whether when contracts have been induced by bribery and have been rescinded on discovery of the bribery, that constitutes a dispute which can be determined by arbitration in the context of a common form of arbitration clause.
CitedPremium Nafta Products Ltd (20th Defendant) and others v Fili Shipping Company Ltd and others; Fiona Trust and Holding Corporation v Privalov HL 17-Oct-2007
The owners of a ship sought to rescind charters saying that they had been procured by bribery.
Held: A claim to rescind a contract by reason of bribery fell within the scope of an arbitration clause under which the parties had agreed to refer . .
CitedAspect Contracts (Asbetos) Ltd v Higgins Construction Plc SC 17-Jun-2015
Aspect had claimed the return of funds paid by it to the appellant Higgins under an adjudication award in a construction contract disute. The claimant had been asked to prpare asbestos surveys and reports on maisonettes which Higgins was to acquire . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Construction, Arbitration

Updated: 17 May 2022; Ref: scu.245557