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Case details

Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago (Appellant) v Trinsalvage Enterprises Ltd (Respondent) (Trinidad & Tobago)

Case ID: JCPC 2021/0027

Jurisdiction: Court of Appeal of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

Case summary


Whether the Respondent was able to recover a 'qunatum meruit' by a claim in unjust enrichment for works completed under a void contract for construction work.


The Respondent purported to contract with the Government (represented in these proceedings by the Appellant) to carry out construction works.

The purported contract was void in law because in Trinidad and Tobago only the Central Tenders Board is authorised by statute to enter into contracts of this sort on the Government's behalf, whereas the Respondent dealt with the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works.

The High Court and the Court of Appeal nevertheless allowed the Respondent to recover the value of the works as a 'quantum meruit'. The Appellant submits that they were wrong to do so and now appeals to the Judicial Committee.



Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago


Trinsalvage Enterprises Ltd



Lord Briggs, Lord Kitchin, Lord Hamblen, Lord Burrows, Lady Rose

Hearing start date

3 May 2023

Hearing finish date

3 May 2023

Watch hearing
3 May 2023 Morning session Afternoon session

Judgment details

Judgment date

18 July 2023

Neutral citation

[2023] UKSC 26