Marlborough District Council v Altimarloch Joint Venture Ltd [2012] NZSC11

Elias CJBlanchard JTipping JMcGrath JAnderson J
Contract Measure of damagesLoss of bargain: difference in the value of land with and without water rights ($400,000).

Loss of bargain is the ‘normal measure of damages in sale transactions.

Cost of cure ($1.055m)Cost of cure ($1.055m).

The ‘normal’ measure of damages is the performance cost of the contract.

Cost of cure ($1.055m).

The ‘normal’ measure of damages in sale contracts is the loss of bargain/difference in value.

The ‘normal’ measure in service contracts is the performance cost.

Loss of bargain ($400,000) (per Elias J)


Council owes duty of careYes (per Tipping J)Yes (per Tipping j)YesYes (per Tipping J)Yes (per Tipping J)
Council caused lossNoYes (until plaintiffs paid by vendors then no)NoYesYes (per McGrath J)
Tort measure of damages (not directly appealed)Difference between the purchase price and the true value ($125,000).Difference between the purchase price and the true value ($125,000).Difference between the purchase price and the true value ($125,000).Difference between the purchase price and the true value ($125,000).Difference between the purchase price and the true value ($125,000) (per McGrath J)
Contribution allowedNoNoNoYes (50%)Yes (per McGrath J)
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