Title

Explaining Contractual Remoteness in Singapore

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

7-2011

Abstract

The Singapore Court of Appeal (the Court of Appeal) has in MFM Restaurants Pte Ltd v Fish & Co Restaurants Pte Ltd rejected Lord Hoffinann's assumption of responsibility test (articulated in The Achilleas) to determine whether damages are too remote in a contractual claim. The Court of Appeal, however, retained assumption of responsibility as a concept to explain the orthodox test for remoteness as embodied in Hadley v Baxendale. To that extent, it expressly accepted Lord Hoffmann's approach in The Achilleas in so far as the concept of assumption of responsibility is already incorporated or embodied in both limbs of the Hadley test. Two questions arise from this decision and form the scope of this comment. First, what is the actual disagreement between the Court of Appeal's more "orthodox" approach, and Lord Hoffmann's approach? Secondly -- depending on the answer to the first question -- can "assumption of responsibility" as a concept justify the Hadley test without it being the test in fact? If the scope of disagreement between the Court of Appeal and Lord Hoffmann is less than fundamental, and assumption of responsibility as a concept can explain the existing orthodox test without subverting it, then the approach adopted by the Court of Appeal may well give effect to Lord Hoffmann's approach in The Achilleas in a more practically feasible way.

Keywords

Assumption of responsibility, Damages, Interpretation, Remoteness, Singapore

Discipline

Asian Studies | Commercial Law

Research Areas

Commercial Law

Publication

Journal of Business Law

Volume

[2011]

First Page

282

Last Page

290

ISSN

0021-9460

Publisher

Sweet and Maxwell

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.