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Jones Day Professorship of Commercial Law Lecture 2019: The State of Illegality

August 6, 2019

Mochtar Riady Auditorium, Level 5
Singapore Management University
Administration Building
81 Victoria Street
Singapore 188065

5:00pm - 6.45pm
(Registration starts at 4.30pm)

In 2016 the UK Supreme Court handed down judgment in Patel v Mirza, which purported to resolve a long-standing controversy about the correct approach to the interpretation of the defence of illegality. The Court adopted a restrictive interpretation of the defence, but one which turned on a discretionary analysis of the context by reference to a ‘range of factors’. Whilst Patel v Mirza concerned a claim for restitution in the law of unjust enrichment, the decision is of relevance to all in private law practice. Subsequent cases, however, suggest that the decision has not provided the certainty being sought. In Singapore, a decision of the Court of Appeal in Ochroid Trading in 2018 rejected the approach adopted by the UK Supreme Court, particularly with respect to the 'range of factors'.

This lecture will examine both decisions and will consider the nature and significance of the different approaches adopted, but also what these decisions reveal about judicial and legal methods in both jurisdictions.

Professor Graham Virgo, QC (Hon), University of Cambridge

Justice Valerie Thean, Supreme Court

Simon Bellas, partner, Jones Day

For more details, please visit the website.


Public CPD Points: 1.5

Practice Area: Corporate / Commercial

Training Category: General

Participants who wish to obtain CPD Points are reminded that they must comply strictly with the Attendance Policy set out in the CPD Guidelines. For this activity, this includes signing in on arrival and signing out at the conclusion of the activity in the manner required by the organiser, and not being absent from the entire activity for more than 15 minutes. Participants who do not comply with the Attendance Policy will not be able to obtain CPD Points for attending the activity. Please refer to for more information.