Was it a mistake?

Sarah Smith revisits Pitt v Holt and asks when you can set aside a transaction on the grounds of mistake

Within a matter of months, two cases concerning the court’s equitable jurisdiction to set aside voluntary dispositions on the grounds of mistake came before the English High Court. 

Hartogs v Sequent (Schweiz) 

The first case, Hartogs v Sequent (Schweiz) AG [2019] EWHC 1915 (Ch), started with His Honour Judge Hodge QC’s decision earlier this year in which the claimant, Bernardo Hartogs, sought to set aside the transfer of significant assets into two offshore trust structures on the grounds of mistake.

First transaction

In 2009, Mr Hartogs sought advice from Attendus Trust Co AG. Attendus advised Mr Hartogs that although he was resident in the UK, he was non-domiciled for inheritance tax purposes.