Photo of Pritvish Shetty

Senior Associate Designate in the Disputes Practice at the Mumbai office of Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas. He can be reached at pritvish.shetty@cyrillshroff.com

TIME IS THE ESSENCE OF THIS CONTRACT - IS IT REALLY

INTRODUCTION

Negotiated, as also standard format contracts, are rife with clauses proclaiming time is of the essence. Parties are usually rest assured after spelling this out, hoping (nay assured) that such words employed would by themselves be adequate to enforce rights through a Court or an arbitral process. Sadly, mere words are usually never enough.

The Supreme Court, in the recent judgement of Welspun Specialty Solution Limited vs. Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd.[i], has reiterated the principles basis which Courts are required to construe whether time is of the essence of a contract. The Court held that a collective reading of the entire contract and its surrounding circumstances is imperative to come to such a conclusion. Merely having an explicit clause in the contract may not be sufficient to make time the essence of it. The Court also held that the availability of extension procedures to fulfil obligations under a contract, along with consequent imposition of liquidated damages, are good indicators to hold that time is not of the essence.
Continue Reading Time is the Essence of this Contract: Is it Really?

The “Security” Defence in Cases relating to Dishonour of Cheques – Not a Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Card

INTRODUCTION

The Supreme Court, in the case of Sripati Singh vs. The State of Jharkhand & Anr[i], has provided much needed clarity on the often-used defence of a cheque having been issued as ‘security’ in proceedings under the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 (the Act). The Court held that a cheque issued by way of security, if dishonoured, would attract the provisions of the Act, if the same is issued in consequence of a legally enforceable debt, which has become recoverable at the time of its presentation.


Continue Reading The “Security” Defence in Cases Relating to Dishonour of Cheques – Not a Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free Card

Arbitral Tribunal

INTRODUCTION

Recently, in the case of Godrej Properties Ltd. v. Goldbricks Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd.[i], the Hon’ble Bombay High Court has held that an arbitral tribunal cannot pass ex-parte orders on the mere filing of an Application under Section 17 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 (the Act) without giving the parties an opportunity to be heard. The Court has further distinguished the powers of an arbitral tribunal to pass interim orders under the Act from those enjoyed by a Civil Court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (CPC).


Continue Reading Parties to be Given an Advance Notice of Hearing – The Bombay High Court Sets Aside an Ex-Parte Order Passed by the Arbitral Tribunal