Eagle Star in double action

The Law Lords have granted leave for an appeal in Mannai Investment Company v Eagle Star Life Assurance Co. The case centres on a lease by Mannai of a second floor office and basement car park in London's Jermyn Street for 10 years. However, in 1994, Mannai gave notice purporting to determine the lease on 12 January 1995. Under the lease, the only available date for premature determination was 13 June 1995, three years after the lease began. Since then the fight has been raging over whether the notice determining the lease was effective or whether, because of the apparent mistake over the date, it was invalid. The High Court found in favour of Mannai but the Appeal Court overturned that decision last July. Mannai is now appealing. In another action, a row between vehicle hire company DG Finance and Eagle Star has reached the House of Lords. A vehicle trailer, insured by hirer ACS Freight Services according to the hire terms, was stolen. DG Finance sued ACS for £25,000, but sought to recover the money from insurers Eagle Star as ACS had been declared bankrupt. But a Milton Keynes County Court application for summary judgement was dismissed and upheld by the Court of Appeal. Now DG Finance is seeking leave to challenge the rulings. The matter has been referred to an oral hearing before the Appeal Committee of the Lords.