The Supreme Court decision in Bresco Electrical Services Ltd (In Liquidation -v- Michael J Lonsdale Electrical Ltd handed down on 17 June 2020 is both timely and significant given the “new normal” that we are all now operating within. In the current economic climate of “lockdown” and the present economic downturn that is now occurring, the worlds of construction and insolvency are now likely to interact and collide on a more frequent basis.
Bresco -v- Lonsdale is one such example of how the interaction of construction law and insolvency law can lead to important legal issues arising. In this case, the issues were of such significance and of general public importance that they progressed up to the Supreme Court in London.
The core issue in the case, centered on the compatibility of two different statutory regimes - the right to refer building disputes to construction adjudication vs the operation of insolvency set off.