Pegasus 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.
Held: The defence in fact was that the claimant had both brought the claim too early because no tax liability had yet arisen, and too late because the arrangement had been set up several years before. Any contract breach took place when the breach occurred and that was time barred. In negligence, time ran from the time when any actual damage occurred, and ‘where the client has engaged professionals in connection with a transaction to secure for him some property or rights, and because of the negligence of those professionals, the client acquires less valuable property or rights than he would have done if he had been given correct advice, he suffers damage at the time of the transaction, even if the property or rights are worth no less than he actually paid for them.’ The damage occurred on the purchase of the shares, and the claim was time barred.

Lewison J
[2008] EWHC 2720 (Ch)
Taxation of Chargeable Gains Act 1992 164A, Finance Act 1997, Finance Act 1993, Limitation Act 1980
England and Wales
CitedForster v Outred and Co CA 1981
A mother signed a mortgage deed charging her property to H as security for a loan to her son. She claimed the solicitor had been negligent in his advice. The solicitor replied that the claim was out of time. The loss accrued not when demand for . .
CitedWatkins and Another v Jones Maidment Wilson (A Firm) CA 4-Mar-2008
The claimants alleged professional negligence by the defendant solicitors in advising them to agree to a postponment of a completion. The defendants raised as a preliminary issue the question of limitation. The claimant said that the limitation . .
CitedDoncaster 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 . .
CitedNykredit Mortgage Bank Plc v Edward Erdman Group Ltd (No 2) HL 27-Nov-1997
A surveyor’s negligent valuation had led to the plaintiff obtaining what turned out to be inadequate security for his loan. A cause of action against a valuer for his negligent valuation arises when a relevant and measurable loss is first recorded. . .
CitedBaker v Ollard and Bentley CA 12-May-1982
The plaintiff and a Mr and Mrs Bodman agreed to buy a house. The plaintiff intended to live on the first floor and the Bodmans on the ground floor. The solicitor should have advised them to convey the freehold into their joint names and then to . .
CitedKnapp v Ecclesiastical Insurance Group Plc and Another CA 30-Oct-1997
A claim in negligence was brought against insurance brokers for failing to advise the claimant of certain matters with the result that an insurance policy entered into by the claimant was voidable for non-disclosure.
Held: The claimant . .
CitedE D and F Man Liquid Products Ltd v Patel and Another CA 4-Apr-2003
The rules contained two occasions on which a court would consider dismissal of a claim as having ‘no real prospect’ of success.
Held: The only significant difference between CPR 24.2 and 13.3(1), is that under the first the overall burden of . .
CitedSwain v Hillman CA 21-Oct-1999
Strike out – Realistic Not Fanciful Chance Needed
The proper test for whether an action should be struck out under the new Rules was whether it had a realistic as opposed to a fanciful prospect of success. There was no justification for further attempts to explain the meaning of what are clear . .
CitedThe Royal Brompton Hospital National Health Service Trust v Hammond and Others (No 5) CA 11-Apr-2001
When looking at an application to strike out a claim, the normal ‘balance of probabilities’ standard of proof did not apply. It was the court’s task to assess whether, even if supplemented by evidence at trial, the claimant’s claim was bound to fail . .
CitedUBAF Ltd v European American Banking Corporation CA 1984
The defendant invited the plaintiff to take part in a syndicated loan. The defendant’s assistant secretary signed a letter to the plaintiff making representations, now claimed to be fraudulent. The defendant succeeded at first instance arguing that . .
CitedDW Moore and Co Ltd v Ferrier CA 1988
A solicitor was instructed to prepare an agreement providing for the introduction of a new working director into an insurance broking business carried on by a company. His instructions called for the new director to enter into a restrictive covenant . .
CitedBell v Peter Browne and Co CA 1990
Mr Bell asked his solicitors to transfer the matrimonial home into his wife’s sole name. He was to receive a one-sixth interest of the gross proceeds on a sale. His interests were to be protected by a trust deed or mortgage. The solicitor drafted . .
CitedLaw Society v Sephton and Co (a Firm) and Others HL 10-May-2006
A firm of solicitors had a member involved in a substantial fraud. The defendant firm of accountants certified the firm’s accounts. There were later many calls upon the compensation fund operated by the claimants, who sought recovery in turn from . .
CitedWatts and Co v Morrow CA 30-Jul-1991
The plaintiff had bought a house on the faith of the defendant’s report that there were only limited defects requiring repair. In fact the defects were much more extensive. The defendant surveyor appealed against an award of damages after his . .
CitedNykredit Mortgage Bank Plc v Edward Erdman Group Ltd (No 2) HL 27-Nov-1997
A surveyor’s negligent valuation had led to the plaintiff obtaining what turned out to be inadequate security for his loan. A cause of action against a valuer for his negligent valuation arises when a relevant and measurable loss is first recorded. . .
CitedSouth Australia Asset Management Corporation v York Montague Ltd etc HL 24-Jun-1996
Limits of Damages for Negligent Valuations
Damages for negligent valuations are limited to the foreseeable consequences of advice, and do not include losses arising from a general fall in values. Valuation is seldom an exact science, and within a band of figures valuers may differ without . .
CitedR P Howard Ltd and Witchell v Woodman Matthews and Co (a firm) 1983
The solicitor defendant knew that the company was a family company effectively run by Mr Witchell from whom they received their instructions. The question raised was as to the duty of the solicitor to company and director.
Held: There is no . .
CitedFirst National Comercial Bank plc v Humberts CA 27-Jan-1995
The plaintiff loaned money on the basis of a negligent survey by the defendant. The borrower subsequently defaulted, and the lender issued a writ. The defendant said that the claim was time barred.
Held: The court allowed the plaintiff’s . .
CitedCoulthard, Ashton Shuttleworth, and Dawes v Neville Russell (a Firm) CA 27-Nov-1997
Auditors who were in a position to advise a company’s directors as to the legality of them making loan payments to a shell company which was acquiring there shares had a duty so to advise. The directors of a company sued them for failing to warn . .
CitedShore v Sedgwick Financial Services Ltd CA 23-Jul-2008
The claimant said that the defendant had given him negligent advice on pensions, failing to say that he should stay within his occupational scheme. The defendant pleaded limitation.
Held: The claimant suffered damage when he made the transfer . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Professional Negligence, Limitation

Updated: 09 November 2021; Ref: scu.277737