Weekly review: 6th – 10th August 2011

Compulsory sale for redevelopment: statutory interpretation

Section 4(2) of the the Land (Compulsory Sale for Redevelopment) (Specification of Lower Percentage) Notice, Cap. 545A only applies to sub-divisions after 1 April 2010. The question it poses for sub-divisions after that date is whether the sub-division altered the common area or a person’s liability in relation to the common area. If either of these criteria are satisfied there has been an effective sub-division for compulsory purchase purposes. It is enough that the sub-division should have taken effect at law (physical sub-division is irrelevant).  Even if physical sub-division were relevant and even if the works were in breach of the DMC / Buildings Ordinance these facts would be irrelevant to the application of the Notice. A purposive approach to statutory interpretation does not allow one to ignore the plain meaning of the language used (Lead Traders Ltd v Lucky Land Enterprise Ltd

Contract: Remedies: Specific performance

A plaintiff seeking specific performance must be ready, able and willing to complete the contract. This means that he must be ready and able to do whatever the contract required (essentially to pay the purchase price) at the time when he would be called upon to perform her side of the bargain. There must be no incapacity to perform and no definite resolve not to perform (Lau Suk Ching Peggy v Ma Hing Lam).

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