In Hoffberger v Ascot International Bloodstock Bureau Ltd 1976 where the D

In hoffberger v ascot international bloodstock bureau

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In Hoffberger v Ascot International Bloodstock Bureau Ltd [1976] , where the D contracted to buy a horse from the Pl and after breached the contract by not accepting the horse. The plaintiff could not find a buyer and incurred expenses in keeping the house. Later, the plaintiff found a buyer and sold it at a lower price. The Pl sued for expenses in keeping the horse and the loss in selling at lower price. The court held that the plaintiff had taken reasonable steps in mitigating his losses and could recover them. What amounts to reasonable steps? In Kabatasan Timber Extraction Co v Chong Fah Shing (FC) [1969] . The D contracted to supply timber to the Pl who owned a sawmill. Under the contract the defendant had to unload the timber within 500 ft from the sawmill. The D unloaded it further away. The Pl ignored the timber and bought timber from a 3rd party having to pay extra. The plaintiffs argued that they had taken reasonable steps to mitigate their loss and have incurred the extra. It was shown by the defendant that the plaintiffs would have incurred a small sum of extra had they hauled the original timber. The FC held that the Pl had not taken reasonable steps to mitigate their loss and expenses incurred were unreasonable. The FC held the Pl could only recover the small sum extra which they would have incurred. * the following principles are no longer codified in the Act but case law. Timing of assessment of damages Another factor the court will take into the account is the date of accessing the damage. In Miliangos v George Frank (Textiles) (1976) , the HOL said that as a general rule damages should be accessed as at the date of breach. However, the HOL foresaw that in certain cases the general rule may lead to injustice. Thus in appropriate cases courts may choose some other date to assess the damages as the purpose of awarding damages to compensate the plaintiff. These always can be seen in the cases involving property, for example, the market price for the another property at the date for the breach of the contract is RM 100K. The court can grant specific performance which the plaintiff no need to mitigate his losses by buying another house. However, there are cases the courts do not grant specific performance but only award damages, and thus the plaintiff has to buy another house. If the general rule applies, the market price of another similar house is RM 150K on the day of judgment, then the plaintiff would suffer losses of RM 50K , there would be injustice if the market price is accessed on the date of the breach. In Malaysia, this was also endorsed by the Supreme Court in Elkobina (M) Sdn Bhd v Mensa Mercantile (Far East) Pte Ltd (SC)[1994] , where the court said that: (a) the normal measures for damages is the difference of the market price of the goods or property as at the date of breach and the contract price . This is especially so where there is a market for the goods, (b) This general rule may be departed from inappropriate cases or where there is no market for the goods.
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