The recent case of Hume Plasterboard Pty Ltd v Lin Betty Building Group Pty Ltd [2022] NSWSC 89 considered whether a Plaintiff was entitled to a summary judgement against two Defendants in the amount of $1,331,240.64. 

Hume Plasterboard sought the money based on alleged outstanding amounts owed for goods and materials it supplied to Lin Betty Building Group (Betty Building). The summary judgement was sought against Betty Building (the first defendant) and its principal (the second defendant) based on a guarantee executed in favour of the Plaintiff in respect of the amounts owing by the first defendant to the plaintiff.

Under the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules, rule 13.1, the Court may award judgment for the Plaintiff or make an order for Summary Judgement in relation to a claim if there is evidence that the defendant has no defence to the claim or part of the claim, or no defence except as to the amount of damages claimed. 

The first defendant, in its defence, submitted that the contract had come to an end and the second defendant said that they were no longer bound by the guarantee as it had been discharged by the payment of $1. 380 000 in settlement of earlier proceedings by the parties. 

In this case, rule 13.1 was satisfied because the Court was satisfied the defendants defence did not give rise to any triable issue or arguable defence to the Plaintiff’s claim. This case is a reminder of the Court’s overriding purpose of facilitating the just, quick and cheap resolution of disputes – which can sometimes require a summary judgement. 

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