NSW Is This a Breach of Contract?

Discussion in 'Commercial Law Forum' started by Campbell Wilson, 16 October 2018.

  1. Campbell Wilson

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    Lord Howe Island Sea Freight has been providing freight services to Lord Howe Island for 20 plus years under a contract arrangement with the Lord Howe Island Board. The latest 5 year contract commenced in Jan 2018 but has been assigned to Birdon Marine, who purchased the Lord Howe Island Sea Freight operation in July 2018.

    The contract included the freight of gas to the island and Sea Freight only levied for freight one direction, with the empty bottles being returned as part of the single levy, including for the 6 months of the current contract. Birdon has now levied the contractual rate ($50 per cylinder) both directions, as this is their interpretation of the wording of the contract.

    They have not sought recompense for the 6 months that Sea Freight only charged one way, so does Birdon's decision to charge both ways represent anything illegal? Does Birdon's "acceptance" of Sea Freight's interpretation of the contract wording for the 6 months mean that changing the interpretation and charging both directions is a breach of contract?

    Cheers
     
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