Special Leave Refused in FDI v Yuanda

I am pleased to say that I prevailed this afternoon in the High Court in the special leave application made by Façade Design International against my clients Yuanda. The application was dismissed with costs on the basis that the appeal did not enjoy sufficient prospects of success.

As foreshadowed, the hearing was heard remotely. I was at my desk in Myponga Beach. My excellent junior Laura Mills was in Melbourne. The bench – Justices Keane, Gordon and Edelman – were in Canberra. As to my opponents, I presume that Brett Walker SC was in Sydney and Michael Roberts QC was in Melbourne, but really they could have been anywhere. My helpful instructing solicitors, Fusion Legal, were in Sydney. It is a weird way of doing things, for sure, but it works rather better than one might imagine. Even after the Covid thing goes away, I suspect we will never go back to the days when we would fly interstate for relatively inconsequential hearings, such as for directions. Hopefully, we will get back to being in court in person for proper argument.

The bench did well, I thought. The questions they asked of each side were not overly intrusive, and enabled us, as counsel, to correct a couple of small matters that they had initially misunderstood. They were well on top of it all.

The result is that the decision in Yuanda Vic Pty Ltd v Façade Designs International Pty Ltd [2021] VSCA 44, in which I prevailed in the Court of Appeal in Victoria, stands.

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