A series of recent Irish High Court decisions has considered the concept of “no transaction” damages in cases involving professional negligence.

The Irish courts have confirmed that the correct approach to assessment of damages in “no transaction” cases is to determine whether the negligent act resulted in the transaction occurring; if it did, then all loss arising from the negligent act itself will be recoverable; if it did not, then it is only the loss arising from the negligent act itself that will be recoverable.

Ultimately, the Irish courts appear to take the approach that if proper conduct on the part of a professional would have led the client not to proceed with a transaction at all, then damages will be assessed by looking at what would have happened had there been no completed transaction.   The facts of each underlying transaction and the scope of the professional’s retainer will be important factors in this assessment.

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