Mailbox (Birmingham) Ltd v Galliford Try Building Ltd
Citation:  EWHC 1405 (TCC)
A dispute arose between Mailbox and Galliford Try concerning the former’s entitlement to liquidated damages, and the latter’s application for an extension of time. An adjudication was held whereby it was decided that Mailbox should be awarded liquidated damages. Galliford Try submitted only a limited defence, having not completed the preparation of its full claim for an extension of time, with the intention of commencing separate dispute resolution proceedings on the issue of extension of time.
Coulson J held that the adjudication had determined the full extent of the issue of Mailbox’s entitlement to liquidated damages, and that issue could not be further considered at a subsequent adjudication. The issue of liquidated damages and extensions of time are necessarily connected and, on the facts, the crystallised dispute which had been determined by the adjudicator had covered both. Galliford Try was entitled to commence a second adjudication to determine whether the contract had been wrongfully terminated, even though that procedure would inevitably feature the same arguments as a dispute on extension of time.
David Thomas QC acted for Mailbox (Birmingham) Ltd
Piers Stansfield QC acted for Galliford Try Building Ltd