Sale of Goods in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Henry Kendall & Sons (A Firm) v William Lillico & Sons Ltd and Others
    • House of Lords
    • 08 May 1968

    If the description is a familiar one it may be that in practice only one quality of goods answers that description —then that quality and only that quality is merchantable quality. Or it may be that various qualities of goods are commonly sold under that description—then it is not disputed that the lowest quality commonly so sold is what is meant by merchantable quality: it is commercially saleable under that description.

  • Johnson v Agnew
    • House of Lords
    • 08 Mar 1979

    (2) The general principle for the assessment of damages is compensatory, i.e. that the innocent party is to be placed, so far as money can do so, in the same position as if the contract had been performed. But this is not an absolute rule: if to follow it would give rise to injustice, the court has power to fix such other date as may be appropriate in the circumstances.

  • Hill (Christopher) Ltd v Ashington Piggeries Ltd (Description)
    • House of Lords
    • 24 Feb 1971

    They should be treated rather as illustrations of the application to simple types of contract of general principles for ascertaining the common intention of the parties as to their mutual promises and their consequences, which ought to be applied by analogy in cases arising out of contracts which do not appear to have been within the immediate contemplation of the draftsman of the Act in 1893.

    It is open to the parties to use a description as broad or narrow as they choose. But ultimately the test is whether the buyer could fairly and reasonably refuse to accept the physical goods proffered to him on the ground that their failure to correspond with that part of what was said about them in the contract makes them goods of a different kind from those he had agreed to buy.

  • Gilbert Ash (Northern) Ltd v Modern Engineering (Bristol) Ltd
    • House of Lords
    • 25 Jul 1973

    But in construing such a contract one starts with the presumption that neither party intends to abandon any remedies for its breach arising by operation of law, and clear express words must be used in order to rebut this presumption.

  • White and Carter (Councils) Ltd v McGregor
    • House of Lords
    • 06 Dic 1961

    The only other case is where parties have contracted for payment on a day certain irrespective of delivery or the passing of property. This is a clear case of a contractual debt unconditioned by any question of performance by the other party. A much closer parallel with the present case is a contract to sell future, or unascertained goods In this case there can be no appropriation of, and therefore passing of property, in the goods without the assent of both buyer and seller.

  • Junior Books Ltd v Veitchi Company Ltd
    • House of Lords
    • 15 Jul 1982

    During the argument it was asked what the position would be in a case where there was a relevant exclusion clause in the main contract. My Lords, that question does not arise for decision in the instant appeal, but in principle I would venture the view that such a clause according to the manner in which it was worded might in some circumstances limit the duty of care just as in the Hedley Byrne case the plaintiffs were ultimately defeated by the defendants' disclaimer of responsibility.

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