Tillman v Egon Zehnder Ltd was heard on 21st and 22nd January. This case is considering a non-competition covenant. The matter arose in the context of the respondent who, following her termination of employment with the appellant company, wished to take employment with a competitor. The appellant successfully obtained an injunction against this, and the respondent’s argument that this was in unreasonable restraint of trade failed. The Supreme Court is to determine whether the doctrine of restraint of trade is engaged by a restriction on post-employment shareholding; the proper construction of the phrase ‘interested in’ in a non-competition covenant, and the correct approach so severance in such a covenant.

Samuels v Birmingham City Council was heard on 31st January. This appeal is considering whether the respondent council was entitled to treat the appellant as intentionally homeless. This is because the appellant’s tenancy was terminated due to rent arrears and she was in receipt of benefits, including housing benefit, which did not cover her actual rent, but left her with a monthly shortfall. Because her house was considered affordable, upon her homelessness application she was judged to have become homeless intentionally. On this appeal, the Supreme Court is to consider the appellant’s contention that the respondent failed to follow the relevant guidance or to give adequate reasons for its conclusion that there was sufficient flexibility in her income from benefits to fund the weekly shortfall in rent.

Frederick & Ors v Positive Solutions (Financial Services) Ltd was heard on 13th and 14th February. This case is considering whether the respondent company is vicariously liable for the fraudulent and dishonest actions of its agent. This matter has arisen in the context of an appeal by the appellants against a decision granting summary judgment to the respondent. The appellants claim that the respondent financial advice company is vicariously liable for a fraud perpetrated by its agent through which the appellants remortgaged their property, raising monies for an investment in a property development scheme which were then misappropriated and lost by the agent.

Cape Intermediate Ltd v Dring (for and on behalf of Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK) was heard 18th and 19th February. This appeal is considering what the powers of the court are pursuant to the Civil Procedure Rules or its inherent jurisdiction to permit access to documents used in litigation to which the applicant was not a part. This has arisen as the respondent has applied for copies of documents used in two sets of proceedings involving the appellant company, which settled after trial but before judgment.

Telereal Trillium v Hewitt (Valuation Officer) was heard on 21st February. This case is considering whether regard should be given to general demand for comparable properties in the market when ascertaining the rateable value of a properly under the statutory hypothesis in the Local Government Finance Act 1988, sch 6, para 2(1), and what the relevance is of the absence of an actual prospective tenant who would pay a positive price in order to occupy the property at the valuation date. The property in question in this appeal is Mexford House, a substantial three-storey block of offices in the North Shore area of Blackpool.

R (Association of Independent Meat Suppliers & Anor) v Food Standards Agency was heard on 5th March. This case is considering  whether there is a right of appeal against an Official Veterinarian’s assessment of the fitness of meat for human consumption where there is a dispute as to the fitness of the meat for human consumption. This matter arose where respondent considered there to be no right of appeal against the Official Veterinarian’s assessment when he found that a bull bought by Cleveland Meat Company Ltd was diseased and so unfit for human consumption.

Secretary of State for Work & Pensions v Gubeladze was heard on 12th and 13th March. This appeal is considering whether the UK’s decision to extend the applicability of Workers’ Registration Scheme (which applied to individuals coming from the 8 Accession States which joined the EU in 2004) by two years was lawful. This matter has arisen in the case of the respondent. This is because she has contended that she had acquired a right of permanent residence by November 2012 because she had lived in the UK for more than 3 years and she had been working for at least the preceding 12 months. However this was rejected by the Secretary of State because the respondent had not registered under the Workers’ Registration Scheme during the first part of her employment and for that period had not been residing legally in the UK. The Upper Tribunal and Court of Appeal have both concluded that the extension of the WRS in 2009 was unlawful.

In the matter of an application by Dennis Hutchings for Judicial Review (NI) was heard on 14th March. This case is considering the construction of condition 4 of the Justice and Security (Northern Ireland) Act 2007, s 1. The Supreme Court must determine whether the condition embraces members of the security forces in Northern Ireland accused of offences that are not part of sectarian violence, and whether the ordinary rules of natural justice apply to the issuance of a certificate under the provision. This matter has arisen as Mr Hutchings, who was a serving soldier with the Life Guards Regiment in 1974, is appealing against the issuing of a certificate under the 2007 Act. This is because the certificate would mean his trial for attempted murder and attempted grievous bodily harm with intent would be before a judge alone, rather than before a jury.

Akcil & Ors v Koza & Anor was heard on 19th March. This appeal is considering whether the Recast Regulation (Regulation (EU) No. 1215/2012), art 24(2) confers exclusive jurisdiction on the English courts to determine the authority in England of directors appointed in foreign proceedings to the board of a foreign corporate shareholder of a company registered in England to cause or permit the foreign corporate shareholder to do anything as a shareholder of the English company. The Supreme Court will also determine whether art 24(2) confers exclusive jurisdiction against anyone other than the foreign corporate shareholder, such as its directors of a corporate shareholder as co-defendants.

Computer Associates (UK) Ltd v The Software Incubator Ltd was heard on 28th March. This case is considering whether software supplied to customers electronically constitutes “goods” within the meaning of the Commercial Agents (Council Directive) Regulations 1993/3053, reg 2(1). This matter arose as the appellant company claimed damages for breach of contract when the respondent terminated their agreement under which the appellant had been promoting the software in the UK, which was produced by the respondent. However the respondent has argued that the appellant is not entitled to compensation because the software supplied electronically did not amount to ‘goods’ and so the Regulations do not apply.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v MM (Scotland) was heard on 9th April. This appeal is considering whether, where a claim to PIP under the Social Security (Personal Independence Payment) Regulations 2013 is based on a person needing social support to engage with other people, the social support must be needed contemporaneously with the engagement, and whether anything that constitutes needing “prompting” to be able to engage with other people also constitutes social support. This has arisen in the case of the respondent, who has suffered from anxiety and depression for six years, and who is heavily reliant on his partner’s assistance for daily living, including in social situations.

Svergies Anfgartygs Assurans Forening (The Swedish Club) & Ors v Connect Shipping Inc & Anor was heard on 10th and 11th April. This appeal is considering, in the case of a vessel on which a fire broke out causing extensive damage, whether the respondent owners could rightly declare the vessel a constructive total loss and whether, in any event, they had lost the right to abandon the Vessel and claim such loss, as contended by the appellant insurers.