Friday, 11 April 2014

Dishonesty does not necessarily preclude claim

In Lloyds TSB Insurance Services Ltd and Halifax General Insurance Services Ltd v James Michael Shanley [2014] EWCA Civ 407  the appellants failed to get the judgment of Pelling J (unreported) overturned despite the fact that the claimant had lied in the course of the proceedings. The claim was for infringement of copyright in a software tool and for breach of confidence, and the defence was that Halifax had a licence and that Lllyds had a sub-licence under it.

The case against Halifax failed because the evidence (such as it was, even after the claimant had demonstrated himself to be unreliable) showed that there was an oral agreement allowing the bank to use the software tool in question (although a forged written licence quite rightly cut no ice). The question was whether Halifax had been entitled to grant a sub-licence to Lloyds to use it, too, and the judge had little difficulty in finding that they didn't. Just because the claimant had told lies did not mean that Lloyds' claim that they had the benefit of a licence would succeed. 

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