Deceit claim against Savills settled out of court

Press Release : December 07, 2009
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Deceit claim against Savills settled out of court

A former client of Savills that was suing the agent for £6.1m for breach of contract has settled his claim.

Barry McKay, the former owner of a luxury home named Tresanton in Sunningdale, Berkshire, mounted a deceit claim against the agent in July last year alleging that Savills had undersold the house to an individual he implicitly said he did not want to sell to.

Savills sold the house for £2.9m, but had McKay claimed that the purchaser, John Morris, would have been prepared to pay significantly more as a special purchaser.

Morris owned the neighbouring Charters development.

Savills admitted the dispute had been caused by "rogue trader" Michael Ball who no longer works at their Sunningdale office.

Jeremy Stuart-Smith QC, representing the estate agent, told the high court that that the parties had "come to terms" but the settlement would remain confidential.

He said that Savills was making an "unreserved and open apology" to McKay and "greatly regretted" the conduct of one of its former employees that led to the court action.

Both parties said they were pleased to have settled the dispute "brought about by the actions of a rogue employee who failed to live up to the high standards of professional conduct that clients associate with Savills".

McKay said: "I am pleased that we can now draw a line under this issue.

"I recognise that Savills has been the victim of a rogue employee and I know that they are a firm of high professional standards which I would be happy to use again."

Pinsent Masons advised McKay.

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