- Can an exclusion clause or liability cap apply to a deliberate or fundamental breach? (Mott MacDonald v Trant Engineering)
- What are the practical implications of this case?
- What was the background?
- What did the court decide?
- Case details
Construction analysis: The Technology and Construction Court gave summary judgment, holding that a clause in a professional services agreement containing a cap on liability, exclusions on liability, and a net contribution clause applied even to fundamental, willful, or deliberate breaches of contract. It did so on the basis that the clause was worded broadly enough to cover such breaches, and there was no need for it expressly to refer to them. The court upheld longstanding authority on the interpretation and application of exclusion clauses. As a result, when the case proceeds to trial, the counterclaim valued at around £5m will need to overcome all the exclusions and will in any event be worth at most £500,000. Written by Marcus M Birch, associate director at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP, London.
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