The Commercial Court of Qatar has delivered judgment in its first substantial piece of litigation, finding that one of two senior executives of a bank in liquidation could not rely on a contract which gave him substantial severance benefits. The contract had been executed by the Chief Executive but at a time when the employee and the Chief Executive were engaged in serious misfeasance for their own benefit, so that the contract was not concluded with actual or ostensible authority. The CEO had earlier withdrawn his own claim based on an even more generous contract, so that the Court was not required to make findings about whether that contract was genuine, but it noted in the context of the second claim that there was very strong evidence that the CEO's contract had been created after the event. The CEO's English leading and junior counsel had earlier withdrawn from the case when they failed to resist arguments that legal privilege relating to the drafting of the contract had been waived.
The judgment is here.
Michael Swainston QC and Edward Harrison appeared for the liquidators, and for the bank in liquidation.