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Rodger v De Gelder& Anor [2011] NSWCA 97

Beazley JA:

81. ... In Meagher, Heydon, Leeming, Meagher, Gummow & Lehane's, Equity: Doctrines and Remedies, 4th ed, 2002, the authors state, at [36-090], that acquiescence has three meanings.

First, it can refer to equitable estoppel in the sense used in Ramsden v Dyson (1866) LR 1 HL 129. That concept is not in issue here. 

Secondly, acquiescence can refer to an element of laches in the sense that a person, over a long period of time, with full knowledge of the person's rights, refrains from exercising those rights in circumstances where it can be inferred that the rights have been abandoned. When used in this sense, it involves waiver, affirmation and release.

The third sense in which the term acquiescence is used is referable to that type of laches which involves prejudice to third parties. The authors note that mere delay, of itself, is not enough to constitute either laches or acquiescence: Jones v Stones [1999] EWCA Civ 1379; [1999] 1 WLR 1739. See Equity: Doctrines and Remedies at [36-050] and [36-070].

Acquiescence, as described in the second and third senses, may be relied upon as a discretionary defence in an equity suit.

Bird v Bird (No 4) [2012] NSWSC 648. Rein J. 5.6.12. 

158 Laches does not apply to claims that are governed expressly or by analogy to a statute of limitation: see Meagher, Gummow and Lehane's equity: doctrines and remedies at [36-045]; see also Archbold v Scully (1861) 9 HLC 360 at 383 and Re Birch (1884) 27 Ch D 622. Although the defences of acquiescence and estoppel remain available to claims governed by a statute of limitation, it is unclear how acquiescence or estoppel could apply in the circumstances and, in the absence of submissions by any of the defendants on these defences, I do not think I should consider them further.

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