James Sherratt and Farhan Farani of Farani Taylor Solicitors represented Pakistan International Airlines Corporation Limited (PIA) in a successful appeal to the Court of Appeal in England and Wales.
The Court of Appeal overturned an earlier finding from the High Court in June 2017. The original judgement found PIA had exercised economic duress when terminating the contract of a Birmingham based travel agent in Autumn 2012, and offering a new contract on terms that included waiving the right to claim disputed historic commission from PIA.
Farani Taylor Solicitors instructed Nigel Jones QC and Thomas Bell of Hardwicke Chambers to appear at the hearing in the Court of Appeal which took place in November 2018.
The law recognises the need for commercial entities to be able to negotiate freely and to drive a hard bargain. To increase the certainty of commercial dealings, the law limits the circumstances in which otherwise valid contracts can be set aside.
In a unanimous judgement handed down Tuesday 14th May 2019, the three Court of Appeal judges found that PIA’s lawful act in terminating the old agreement with the agent by notice did not amount to unlawful economic duress, as PIA honestly believed that it had a defence to the previous claims which the agent waived when it entered into the new contract.
Commercial parties need to have clarity and certainty when they enter into contracts with one another. Therefore, this is an important ruling by the Court of Appeal on the validity of commercial contracts.
If you are looking for a Commercial Contracts and Litigation Specialist then contact James Sherratt.