High Court has overturned a decision of the New South Wales Court of Appeal
By Evelyn Marcou, Senior Associate, MST Lawyers
In a unanimous decision, the High Court has overturned a decision of the New South Wales Court of Appeal which had held that a builder owed and breached a duty of care to an Owners’ Corporation and was liable in negligence for damages for pure economic loss. The High Court has previously held that a builder may owe a duty of care to subsequent purchasers of residential premises in the context of claims for pure economic loss. However, this duty had not been extended to purchasers of commercial property. Although no duty was found to exist on the facts of Brookfield Multiplex Ltd v Owners Corporation Strata Plan 61228 ( HCA 36), the High Court has not closed the door on the possibility of such a duty arising, in different circumstances.