Public disclosure of mortgaged lands

India | 01 December 2009

To afford a home of your own is every person’s dream. But did you know that attachment proceedings can be initiated by the bank, in respect of your dream home, because your builder or developer has mortgaged the property to the bank and has defaulted in repaying the loan?

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Litigating in the DIFC: some initial guidance for the unaware

UAE | 01 December 2009

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a 110-acre free zone that was established by the government of the Emirate of Dubai in December 2004 to promote Dubai as a fully-serviced ‘onshore’ capital market, constitutes an autonomous jurisdiction within the UAE. It has an independent judicial system, with its own courts and an independent judicial authority, which deals with civil and commercial transactions arising from and within the DIFC. The DIFC judicial system is modelled on the common law and inspired, in particular, by the English legal tradition, which explains why the procedure before the DIFC courts is very much akin to the procedure before the English courts. To facilitate its implementation, a whole series of laws, such as DIFC Law No 6 of 2004 on contract law, DIFC Law No 6 of 2005 on implied terms in contracts and unfair terms and DIFC Law No 7 of 2005 on damages and remedies, have been adopted, governing civil and commercial transactions that are carried out within or have a qualifying connection with the DIFC.

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Limiting lease liabilities

Real estate | 01 December 2009

Previous articles have discussed the effective exercise of break clauses, thereby bringing the existing lease liability to an end (p63, IHL170) and former tenants being held to account for their historic lease liabilities (p56, IHL174). This article deals with how to minimise the cost of lease liabilities for premises that are currently in use, especially during a recession.

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State aid risks involved in real estate transactions and public-private partnerships

The Netherlands | 01 December 2009

Private undertakings that engage in commercial transactions with public authorities located in the EU should be more aware of the risk of unlawful state aid. This is especially true for construction or development companies, as well as real estate funds, when participating in projects with public authorities involving the sale and/or finance of buildings or land. In many of these transactions the risks of state aid are either ignored or overlooked. In general, state aid is forbidden and any unlawful state aid including interest is to be recovered from the recipient undertaking. The recipient undertaking therefore bears the risks of unlawful state aid. Hence the importance for undertakings to determine whether a risk of state aid exists in relation to commercial transactions with public authorities. If so, appropriate steps should be taken to seek compliance with rules on state aid or to notify such aid to the European Commission.

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Stop the press:the Reynolds defence

Technology, Media and Telecoms | 01 December 2009

Reynolds v Times Newspapers Ltd & ors [2001] established a new defence for libel claims in which the story is in the public interest and the publisher acted ‘responsibly’. The Reynolds defence is designed to protect serious investigative journalists acting in good faith and reporting on matters of public interest. Even where allegations are false and hugely damaging to the subject of the publication, publishers can make use of this defence. However, Reynolds has also provided a useful tool for subjects to delay, if not prevent, publication of defamatory allegations.

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Fire safety: a burning legal issue

Dispute Resolution | 01 December 2009

Heralded as the biggest overhaul of fire safety legislation in 40 years, the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order (FSO) 2005 was introduced in April 2006 with the intention of streamlining existing legislation, reducing the burden on business and improving safety by allowing fire authorities (the bodies responsible for fire brigades in each area) to concentrate on high-risk premises; all of which are laudable aims. But over three years on what’s been the reality?

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Arbitration of IP disputes: eyes wide shut

Technology, Media and Telecoms | 01 December 2009

The advantages of using arbitration to resolve intellectual property (IP) disputes are many. The fact that it is becoming increasingly popular may be illustrative of this. However, as all those who have been involved in arbitration are aware, it is not all plain sailing. This article looks at some of the practical realities of arbitrating IP disputes, and why it is important for parties to be fully aware of the benefits and pitfalls when including an arbitration clause in an agreement or agreeing to submit an existing dispute for arbitration (often referred to as a ‘submission agreement’).

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Samsun Logix and developing cross-border insolvency issues

Finance | 01 December 2009

With the ever-increasing trend towards globalisation, it is often observed that there are few businesses of reasonable size that do not trade across borders. At this difficult economic time, many are likely to have overseas suppliers, contractors, counter-parties and customers undergoing financial difficulties. For these businesses, cross-border insolvency issues are cropping up frequently. At the same time, the law is rapidly developing, with cases on cross-border insolvency issues regularly brought before the English and foreign courts.

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