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Tax Cases

12 January 2005
Issue: 3990 / Categories: Tax cases
CCE v Barclays Bank plc, Court of Appeal, 22 November 2004; Fengate Developments v CCE, Court of Appeal, 1 December 2004; R (on the application of IDT Card Services Ireland Ltd) v CCE, Administrative Court, 21 December 2004; Preston Meats Ltd and another (SpC 435)

Duty of care

Customs obtained freezing orders against two companies in respect of outstanding VAT. Both companies held accounts with the defendant bank. Customs sent copies by fax of the orders to the bank. Two hours later the companies instructed the bank to transfer substantial amounts of funds out of their accounts. The bank did not stop these transfers with the result that the amounts remaining in the companies' accounts were considerably less than the amounts owed to Customs.

Customs claimed negligence against the bank on the ground that they could not enforce the judgments against the companies as fully after the transfers as if the transfers had not taken place. The bank denied that it owed a duty of care to the claimants to prevent the transfers.

In the High Court the judge held that the bank was under no duty at the...

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