OBG Ltd OBG (Plant and Transport Hire) Ltd v Raymond International Ltd; OBG Ltd v Allen: CA 9 Feb 2005

The defendants had wrongfully appointed receivers of the claimant, who then came into the business and terminated contracts undertaken by the business. The claimant asserted that their actions amounted to a wrongful interference in their contracts and otherwise. The receivers having done the acts normally associated with a receivership.
Held: The tort of unlawful interference with contractual relations had not been made out; the alleged tortfeasor was not intending to prevent the performance of any primary obligation of the contract. Peter Gibson LJ: ‘as a matter of English law there can be no conversion of a chose in action. Historically that is obvious, the tort of conversion being derived from trover, which required averments of goods lost by their possessor and found by the defendant.’ The tort of wrongful interference with contractual relations required an intention to achieve a breach or non-performance of a contractual obligation. That had not been shown in this case.

Lord Justice Peter Gibson Lord Justice Carnwath Lord Justice Mance
[2005] EWCA Civ 106, Times 24-Feb-2005, [2005] QB 762, [2005] 2 All ER 602, [2005] BPIR 928, [2005] PNLR 27, [2005] 1 All ER (Comm) 639, [2005] BLR 245, [2005] 1 BCLC 711, [2005] 2 WLR 1174
England and Wales
CitedLumley v Gye 1853
Inducing breach of contract is a Tort
An opera singer (Miss Wagner) and the defendant theatre owner were joint wrongdoers. They had a common design that the opera singer should break her contract with the plaintiff theatre owner, refuse to sing in the plaintiff’s theatre and instead . .
CitedGreig v Insole 1978
The court was asked whether the Test and County Cricket Board had, by passing certain resolutions, induced cricketers with contracts with World Series Cricket Pty Ltd, the plaintiff, to break those contracts. The TCCB had acted in good faith and . .
CitedMillar and Others v Bassey and Another CA 26-Aug-1993
It was alleged that Miss Shirley Bassey had breached her contract with a record producer Dreampace (or with her own management company which had in turn contracted with Dreampace), as a result of which Dreampace had been unable to perform a contract . .
CitedLatvian Shipping Company and Others v Stocznia Gdanska Sa CA 21-Jun-2002
A payment condition was just that and that a failure to pay entitled the seller to terminate at common law. Rix LJ said: ‘It is established law that, where one party to a contract has repudiated it, the other may validly accept that repudiation by . .
CitedMerkur Island Corp v Laughton HL 1983
The shipowner claimants were party to a contract under which their obligation to prosecute their voyages with the utmost despatch was qualified by clauses providing for the vessel to go off hire and for charterers to have a right after 10 days to . .
CitedTorquay Hotel v Cousins CA 17-Dec-1968
The plaintiff contracted to buy oil for his hotel from Esso. Members of the defendant trades union blocked the deliveries of oil by Esso to the Hotel because of a trade dispute they had with the management of the hotel. The hotel sued for an . .
CitedD C Thomson and Co Ltd v Deakin CA 1952
The defendant Trades Union was alleged to have indirectly prevented a supplier from performing its contract to supply paper to the plaintiffs by inducing its members to withdraw their services from the supplier.
Held: It is a tort at common . .
CitedKuwait Airways Corporation v Iraqi Airways Company and Others (Nos 4 and 5) HL 16-May-2002
After the invasion of Kuwait, the Iraqi government had dissolved Kuwait airlines, and appropriated several airplanes. Four planes were destroyed by Allied bombing, and 6 more were appropriated again by Iran.
Held: The appeal failed. No claim . .
CitedFouldes v Willoughby 1841
The ferryman who turned the plaintiff’s horses off the Birkenhead to Liverpool ferry was guilty of conversion if he intended to exercise dominion over them, but not otherwise. Scratching the panel of a horse carriage would be a trespass, but it . .
CitedQuinn v Leathem HL 5-Aug-1901
Unlawful Means Conspiracy has two forms
Quinn was treasurer of a Belfast butchers’ association. Leathem, who traded as a butcher, employed some non-union men, although when the union made difficulties he asked for them to be admitted to the union, and offered to pay their dues. The union . .
CitedSouth Wales Miners’ Federation v Glamorgan Coal Company HL 1905
The union was accused of unlawful interference in contractual relations, and replied that their intention in calling a strike (inducing miners to break their contracts of employment) was to restrict production of coal and thereby raise its price. . .
CitedIn re Simms CA 1934
A bankrupt builder had been unable to fulfil and had abandoned his outstanding contracts. The receiver took them over and completed and earned monies under them which would not otherwise have been received.
Held: The possibility of claiming . .
CitedLonhro plc v Fayed HL 28-Jun-1991
The parties had competed in bidding to acquire a public company. The plaintiff alleged that the defendant had used a fraudulent misrepresentation to the Secretary of State to achieve an advantage.
Held: To establish the tort of conspiracy to . .
CitedMeade v Haringey Borough Council 1979
The economic tort of interference with a pre-existing contractual or legal position can also protect statutory interests. . .
CitedRCA Corporation v Pollard CA 1982
The illegal activities of bootleggers who had made unauthorised recordings of concerts, diminished the profitability of contracts granting to the plaintiffs the exclusive right to exploit recordings by Elvis Presley.
Held: The defendant’s . .
CitedCollen v Wright 1857
The law of breach of the warranty of authority should be read to imply a remedy to an innocent third party, with whom the agent has purported without authority to make a contract or to reach a settlement of outstanding liabilities under a contract, . .
Dictum doubtedGreat Atlantic Insurance Co v Home Insurance Co 1981
Lloyd J said: ‘if the principal has held out his agent as having a certain authority, it hardly lies in his mouth to blame the agent for acting in breach of a secret limitation placed on that authority’. . .
CitedPape v Westacott 1894
The landlord’s agent, in breach of his authority, released a licence to assign a lease taking a cheque (instead of cash) for the outstanding rent due from the existing tenant. This took place in the presence of the assignee, who did not however know . .
CitedPhipps v Boardman CA 1965
Affirmed . .
CitedEnglish v Dedham Vale Properties Ltd ChD 1978
A prospective purchaser of a property had applied for planning permission in the name of the vendor without telling the vendor what it was doing.
Held: The purchaser could fairly and accurately be described, as Slade J described the purchaser, . .
CitedMontrod Ltd v Grundkotter Fleischvertriebs GmbH CA 20-Dec-2001
A beneficiary under a letter of credit does not owe a duty of care to the applicant (not the buyer) in presenting documents under the letter of credit. . .
CitedMassey v Sladen 1868
A bill of sale was given redeemable on demand if a floating debt were paid. No notice was required. Other cerditors made demands upon the plaintiff’s absence on his son, and seized the goods immediately.
Held: The notice required by the deed . .
CitedMoore v Shelley PC 1883
Under a mortgage deed, the mortgagor was to remain in possession, and manage it until a default was made. Demand was made during the plaintiff’s absence and upon non-payment the person purporting to be the defendant’s agent took possession. The . .
CitedPhillips (Liquidator of A J Bekhor and Co ) and Another v Brewin Dolphin Bell Lawrie HL 18-Jan-2001
The company sold its business to the respondent for one pound, but the respondent agreed to sublease computer equipment for an amount equivalent to the value of the company. The company defaulted, and the computer equipment was recovered. The . .

Cited by:
CitedDouglas and others v Hello! Ltd and others (No 3) CA 18-May-2005
The principal claimants sold the rights to take photographs of their wedding to a co-claimant magazine (OK). Persons acting on behalf of the defendants took unauthorised photographs which the defendants published. The claimants had retained joint . .
Appeal fromDouglas and others v Hello! Ltd and others; similar HL 2-May-2007
In Douglas, the claimants said that the defendants had interfered with their contract to provide exclusive photographs of their wedding to a competing magazine, by arranging for a third party to infiltrate and take and sell unauthorised photographs. . .
See AlsoOBG Ltd and Another v Allan and others CA 21-Feb-2005
The Court reduced the amount of damages owed to the applicants to GBP 244,000 plus interest. . .
Appeal fromDouglas and others v Hello! Ltd and others; similar HL 2-May-2007
In Douglas, the claimants said that the defendants had interfered with their contract to provide exclusive photographs of their wedding to a competing magazine, by arranging for a third party to infiltrate and take and sell unauthorised photographs. . .
See AlsoOBG Ltd And Others v United Kingdom ECHR 13-Nov-2009
Statement of Facts . .
See AlsoOBG Ltd And Others v United Kingdom ECHR 29-Nov-2011
Admissibility . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Insolvency, Torts – Other

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.222961