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Judgment handed down in Masters Home Improvement Pty Ltd and Woolworths Limited v North East Solution Pty Ltd

27 April 2017

The Court of Appeal today allowed an appeal by Woolworths Limited and Masters Home Improvement Pty Ltd. The trial judge had found that both Woolworths and Masters had breached the terms of an agreement for lease of a property on the McIvor Highway in Strathdale, Bendigo on which a Masters Home Improvement store was to be built in 2010. The judge found that Woolworths had not acted in good faith and reasonably and ordered that it pay North East Solution Pty Ltd damages of more than $10 million and interest of over $4 million. The Court of Appeal has set aside those orders and made orders dismissing the claim by NES.

The agreement for lease provided for Woolworths and North East Solution to negotiate reasonably and in good faith the amount that Woolworths would contribute towards the construction costs of the Masters store. The judge found that Woolworths had failed to comply with the obligation in a number of respects. In allowing the appeal, the Court of Appeal concluded that there was not sufficient evidence to support these findings.

NOTE: This summary is necessarily incomplete. It is not intended as a substitute for the Court’s reasons or to be used in any later consideration of the Court’s reasons. The only authoritative pronouncement of the Court’s reasons and conclusions is that contained in the published reasons for judgment.

Read the full judgment on AustLII (External link)

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