Category Archives: Public policy

Rennie W, ‘The Tainting Doctrine in Singapore Conflict of Laws’

ABSTRACT In Singapore conflict of laws, the tainting doctrine applies where a contractual claim governed by Singapore law is not itself unenforceable for illegality or public policy, but is sufficiently connected to a transaction which is so unenforceable. However, the mechanism of this doctrine – as articulated in the English Court of Appeal decision of […]

Vaheesan and Buck, ‘Non-Competes and Other Contracts of Dispossession’

ABSTRACT Employers have used non-compete clauses to deprive tens of millions of workers of the freedom to change jobs or start their own businesses. In occupations ranging from home health aide to journalist and sandwich shop worker, employers have used this legal power to their great benefit. Non-compete clauses reduce worker mobility, help employers keep […]

Preston Torbert, ‘“Because It is Wrong”: An Essay on the Immorality and Illegality of the Online Service Contracts of Google and Facebook’

ABSTRACT This essay argues that the behavioral-advertising business model under which an internet platform, such as Google or Facebook, provides free services in exchange for the user’s personal data is immoral and illegal. It is immoral because it relies on addiction, surveillance, and manipulation of the user to deplete the user’s autonomy. The contract between […]

Adam Parachin, ‘Why and When Discrimination is Discordant with Charitable Status: The Problem with “Public Policy”, The Possibility of a Better Solution’

ABSTRACT When courts have considered when and why discrimination renders an institution ineligible for charitable status, they have resorted to the doctrine of public policy to explain the non-charitableness of discrimination. Public policy is not, though, up to the task. It is undisciplined, inspires courts to consider irrelevant factors and offers no principled explanation as […]

Ernest Lim, ‘Attribution: A New Controversy?’

ABSTRACT Although courts have generally endorsed the contextual, purposive approach to attribution, there remains significant uncertainty in its application. The recent Singapore Court of Appeal’s decision in Red Star raised an issue that was hitherto unaddressed by the Singapore and UK courts: whether the claim brought by a solvent company against its fraudulent employee should […]

‘Three reflections on the role of policy in the law of restitution for unjust enrichment’

“The recent decision of the Court of Appeal for England and Wales in Gray v Global Energy Horizons Corporation [2020] EWCA Civ 1668 (09 December 2020) has prompted me to reflect, briefly, on the role of policy in the law of restitution for unjust enrichment. In this post, I will consider that role in the […]

Fahad Bin Siddique, ‘Champerty vs Third-Party Funding in Arbitration: A Censorious Debate’

ABSTRACT The argument regarding the treatment of financial support by third parties in international arbitration has escort to a discussion of several benefits and risks offered by the concept of third-party funding. On the other hand, different countries’ economic and legislative approaches are also crucial to flourish this concept of third-party funding. Several investors, banks, […]

Horsey and Powell, ‘A Step Too Far? Whittington Hospital NHS Trust v XX [2020] UKSC 14′

ABSTRACT This comment piece explores the decision in Whittington Hospital NHS Trust v XX [2020] UKSC 14. It argues that despite notable shifts in public policy in respect of the acceptability of surrogacy as a means of family formation in the past twenty years, the Supreme Court has taken a step too far in deciding […]

Stoffel and Co v Grondona [2020] UKSC 42′

“In Stoffel and Co v Grondona, the Supreme Court considered the operation of the common law defence of illegality in the context of solicitors’ negligence for the first time since its seminal decision in Patel v Mirza [2017] AC 467. At the same time, the Court handed down judgment in a clinical negligence case: Henderson […]

‘Mental health, clinical negligence and the illegality defence’

“In Ecila Henderson v. Dorset Healthcare University NHS Trust Foundation [2020] UKSC 43 the Supreme Court has revisited the defence of illegality (‘ex turpi causa’) in the context of a claim for clinical negligence. The claimant – a mental health patient – had committed a criminal offence as a result of the defendant health authority’s […]