IN THE HIGH COURT OF THE
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION
COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE
ACTION NO. 8631 OF 1999
Coram: Godfrey, J.A. in Chambers (sitting as an additional Judge of the Court of First Instance)
Date of Hearing : 25 August 1999
Date of Judgment : 25 August 1999
J U D G M E N T
1. This is an application for summary judgment, under Order 86 of the Rules of the High Court, for specific performance of an oral agreementmade in March 1999 for the sale of a business, carried on in partnership by P1, P2 and P3, to D1 and D2. The oral agreement comprehendedthe grant to D1 and D2, by P1 and P2, of a tenancy of Unit B, 7/F Mai On Industrial Building, and a similar grant to D1 and D2 byP2, of a tenancy of Unit C. There are disputes between the parties as to whether any such oral agreement was concluded; as to theterms of any such oral agreement; and as to the extent to which, if any, the oral agreement (if ever concluded at all) has been performedby D1 and D2. These include disputes about one of the terms of the alleged oral agreement relating to the re-imbursement by D1 andD2 to P1, P2 and P3 of the deposits made by the latter with the electricity and water utilities; but the most important of thesedisputes appear to relate to the rent payable, and the term of the tenancy, of each of the units and as to the instalment paymentsto be made as to the balance ($400,000) of the purchase price ($900,000), of which $500,000 has been received by P1, P2 and P3 asa down payment.
2. The court cannot possibly investigate, let alone resolve, these disputes on an application under Order 86 of the Rules of the HighCourt, and the whole matter must be investigated at a trial. I will therefore give the defendants unconditional leave to defend theaction; costs will be costs in the cause. I will give no further directions at this stage, since I am told the plaintiffs may wishto amend the statement of claim.
Mr. Andy Hung instructed by M/s. Lo, Chan & Leung for Plaintiffs
Miss Ivy Chui instructed by M/s. Au, Kong & Tang for 1st Defendant
Mr. Benjamin Chain instructed by M/s. Y.S. Lau & Partners for 2nd Defendant