Can incorporated owners bring proceedings where the duty was owed only to some owners?

Incorporated Owners of One Beacon Hill v Match Power Investment Ltd ([2011] HKEC 1156) (reversed by the Court of Appeal) concerned proceedings brought by incorporated owners against the developer of the building. The proceedings alleged that sub-standard materials had been used and poor workmanship allowed in the construction process. The developer, Match Power, sought to strike out the action on the basis that the incorporated owners had no locus standi. The relevant duty concerned the common parts but it was a contractual duty owed to only some of the original purchasers: different forms of sale contract were used at different stages of development and only some incorporated the relevant duty. Match Power argued that incorporated owners could only bring proceedings where the relevant duty was owed to all of the owners. The court rejected this; it was enough that the duty was owed to one or more owners and concerned the common parts. The incorporated owners could bring proceedings even though the duty was contractual.

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