Illegal Contract in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Archbolds (Freightage) Ltd v S. Spanglett Ltd
    • Court of Appeal
    • 15 Dic 1960

    Another effect of illegality is to prevent a plaintiff from recovering under a contract if in order to prove his rights under it he has to rely upon his own illegal act; he may not do that even though he can show that at the time of making the contract he had no intent to break the Law and that at the time of performance he did not know that what he was doing was illegal.

  • Soleimany v Soleimany
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 19 Feb 1998

    In our view, an enforcement judge, if there is prima facie evidence from one side that the award is based on an illegal contract, should enquire further to some extent. Or is it a fair inference that he did reach that conclusion? Is there anything to suggest that the arbitrator was incompetent to conduct such an enquiry? May there have been collusion or bad faith, so as to procure an award despite illegality?

  • Colen and another v Cebrian (UK) Ltd
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 20 Nov 2003

    But if he does not have to do so, then in my view the question is whether the method of performance chosen and the degree of participation in that illegal performance is such as to "turn the contract into an illegal contract" (see the dictum of Jenkins LJ in B and B Viennese Fashions v Losane [1952] 1 All E R 909 at 913 cited by Scarman LJ in Ashmore Benson Ltd VA v Dawson Ltd [1973] 1 WLR 828 at 836, and the language of para 34 in Hall quoted above).

  • Parry-Jones v Law Society
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 15 Nov 1967

    So far as Mr Parry-Jones' point as to privilege is concerned, privilege of course is irrelevant when one is not concerned with judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings because, strictly speaking, privilege refers to a right to withhold from a court, or a tribunal exercising judicial functions, material which would otherwise be admissible in evidence. What we are concerned with here is the contractual duty of confidence, generally implied though sometimes expressed, between a solicitor and client.

  • Patel v Mirza
    • Supreme Court
    • 20 Jul 2016

    In assessing whether the public interest would be harmed in that way, it is necessary a) to consider the underlying purpose of the prohibition which has been transgressed and whether that purpose will be enhanced by denial of the claim, b) to consider any other relevant public policy on which the denial of the claim may have an impact and c) to consider whether denial of the claim would be a proportionate response to the illegality, bearing in mind that punishment is a matter for the criminal courts.

  • Saunders v Edwards
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 13 Mar 1987

    Where the plaintiff's action in truth arises directly ex turpi causa, he is likely to fail, as he did in Alexander v. Rayson, [1936] 1 King's Bench 182; J.M. Allan (Merchandising) Ltd v. Cloke, [1963] 2 Queen's Bench 340; Ashmore, Benson, Pease & Co, Ltd. v. A.V. Dawson Ltd. [1973] 1 Weekly Law Reports 828; and Thackwell v. Barclays Bank plc, [1986] 1 All England Reports, 676. Where the plaintiff has suffered a genuine wrong, to which allegedly unlawful conduct is incidental, he is likely to succeed, as he did in Bowmakers Ltd. v. Barnet Instruments Ltd.

  • Tinsley v Milligan
    • House of Lords
    • 24 Jun 1993

    In my judgment the time has come to decide clearly that the rule is the same whether a plaintiff founds himself on a legal or equitable title: he is entitled to recover if he is not forced to plead or rely on the illegality, even if it emerges that the title on which he relied was acquired in the course of carrying through an illegal transaction.

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Legislation
  • Immigration Act 2016
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 2016
    ...... 1 . Labour market and illegal working PART 1 . Labour market and illegal working . Director of Labour ... . (a) under a contract of employment,. . . (b) under a contract of apprenticeship,. . . (c) ......
  • Truck Act 1831
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1831
    ......, and by the Authority of the same, That in all Contractshereafter to be made for the hiring of any Artificer in any of the Trades ... Coin aforesaid, such Contract shall be and is hereby declared illegal, null, and void. . S-II . and must not contain any Stipulations as to ......
  • Truck Act 1896
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1896
    ......(1)1.—(1.) An employer shall not make any contract with any. workman for any deduction from the sum contracted to be paid. by ...Saving as to contracts and payments illegal under existing Acts.8 Saving as to contracts and payments illegal under ......
  • Criminal Law Act 1967
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1967
    ......affect any rule of that law as to the cases in which a contract is. to be treated as contrary to public policy or otherwise illegal. S-15 ......
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Books & Journal Articles
  • The Effect Of An Illegal Contract
    • Núm. 23-4, Julio 1960
    • The Modern Law Review
  • THE TRANSFER OF PROPERTY UNDER ILLEGAL TRANSACTIONS1
    • Núm. 25-2, Marzo 1962
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... IT is often stated to be a well-established rule that where property has been transferred under an illegal contract, and the parties have in addition observed all the formalities necessary for conveying title to the particular ......
  • ANOTHER LOOK AT BOWMAKERS v. BARNET INSTRUMENTS
    • Núm. 35-1, Enero 1972
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... The common law on illegal contracts is Draconian enough, in all conscience, and the ......
  • The ‘Unruly Horse’ has Bolted: Tinsley v Milligan
    • Núm. 57-3, Mayo 1994
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... a radical reformulation by the Court of Appeal of the illegality defence in civil law. Traditionally, the courts have imposed a ... the Unruly Horse: Public Policy in the Law of Contract’ (1972) 30 CJJ 144; Gelhorn, ‘Contracts and Public Policy’ ......
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Law Firm Commentaries
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