Sharratts

Affordable Housing Law

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How much delay deprives buyer of substantially the whole benefit of the contract?

29th July 2013

The Court of Appeal has considered the effect of delay on a contract for a sale of a long lease of a flat that was to be built by a developer. Overturning the judge at first instance, the Court of Appeal held that, following Telford Homes (Creekside) Ltd v Ampurius Nu Homes Holdings Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 577, it was impossible to conclude that a delay of approximately one month by the developer deprived the buyer of substantially the whole of the benefit of the contract so as to amount to repudiatory breach by the developer. This meant that the buyer had no right to terminate the agreement for lease.

The decision applies established law of contract and is a good illustration of the complexities of repudiatory breach and contractual time provisions.