Severability of an adjudication decision
Severability of an adjudication decision

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

  • Severability of an adjudication decision
  • Cantillon v Urvasco
  • Decisions since Cantillon v Urvasco

Produced in association with 4 Pump Court

The issue of severance normally arises in an enforcement application where the court has upheld a jurisdictional challenge or decided that there has been a breach of the rules of natural justice, but only in respect of part of the adjudicator’s decision. The question, therefore, is whether some parts of the adjudicator’s decision be severed and enforced, even if other parts were made without jurisdiction/in breach of natural justice.

The issue of severance can also arise where the court has determined (eg in Part 8 proceedings) that the adjudicator’s reasoning on a particular point was flawed (see, for example, Willow Corp v MTD Contractors).

For guidance generally on breach of natural justice, the grounds for jurisdictional challenges, and Part 8 proceedings, see Practice Notes: Breach of natural justice in adjudication, Grounds for a jurisdictional challenge in an adjudication and Adjudication and Part 8 proceedings.

Cantillon v Urvasco

Guidance on the ability to sever a decision was given by the court, on an obiter basis, in Cantillon v Urvasco. There the adjudicator had been entitled to deal with more than one dispute in the same reference. A challenge to the whole decision was made on the basis that the adjudicator was in breach of natural justice in dealing with arguments on one of the disputes. The court rejected the submission that there was

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