Agency for dispute resolution practitioners
Agency for dispute resolution practitioners

The following Dispute Resolution guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Agency for dispute resolution practitioners
  • When does an agency relationship arise?
  • What is the relationship between principal and agent?
  • What is the agent and principal’s relationship with the third party?
  • How do you terminate an agency?

When does an agency relationship arise?

Agency is an arrangement under which a principal appoints an agent to act at its direction for specified purposes.

In particular, agents are commonly appointed for the purposes of introducing and concluding agreements with new contacts and/or customers. Agency law thus deals with the relationships between:

  1. principal and agent

  2. agent and third party, and

  3. principal and third party

Note that specific provisions may apply to commercial agents which are outside the scope of this note. For more information, see Practice Notes:

  1. Commercial agency

  2. Relationship of commercial agent and principal

  3. Termination of commercial agency arrangements

An agency is normally express, ie the parties agree that their relationship is that of principal and agent. It may also be implied from the conduct of the parties and all the circumstances of the relationship (Garnac Grain Company Inc v HMF Faure).

As noted in Acer Investment Management Ltd v Mansion Group Ltd:

‘There are many different types of relationship which are labelled “agency”, but the label does not determine the incidents of the relationship. It is necessary to see in each case exactly what type of relationship exists between an agent and their “principal” (for want of a better word). A critical factor in defining any relationship is the terms of any contract between the parties.’

Agency as a term is sometimes applied