Claims for rectification
Claims for rectification

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

  • Claims for rectification
  • What is rectification?
  • Establishing a claim for rectification
  • Rectification for unilateral mistake
  • Standard of proof in a rectification claim
  • Analysing the rectification claim—a subjective approach
  • Background—the objective/subjective conundrum
  • FSHC—Court of Appeal confirms subjective approach
  • Admissible evidence in rectification claims
  • Claiming rectification—delay
  • More...

This Practice Note outlines when a claim for rectification may be appropriate, what you need to establish to succeed on such a claim and what evidence may be admissible in support.

In Tartsinis v Novana, Leggatt J as he then was questioned the authority of Lord Hoffman’s dicta in Chartbrook v Persimmon Homes (as followed in Daventry v Daventry), with regard to whether the court should apply an objective or a subjective test when analysing claims for rectification. In 2019, Leggatt LJ, gave the Court of Appeal’s unanimous decision in FSHC Group Holdings Ltd v Glas Trust Corporation confirming that test for the relevant intention of the parties to the document sought to be rectified is a subjective test.

What is rectification?

Rectification is an equitable remedy aimed at amending a document to accord with the intention of the parties.

Parties to a contract may have had a common intention or understanding when they drew up their contract as to what it meant but, somehow, that meaning has not been reflected in the drafting, ie it is different from the objective meaning of the contractual document as ascertained in accordance with the rules of contract interpretation (on which, more generally, see Practice Note: Rules of contract interpretation).

In such case a claim for rectification may be appropriate.

Note, as per Hildyard J in Procter & Gamble v Svenska Cellulosa:

‘The basis and purpose

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