Consent to risk and movie stunts: a recent ruling from South Africa

During filming for Resident Evil: The Final Chapter in South Africa, UK-based stuntwoman Olivia Jackson was involved in a serious collision with a camera boom while riding a motorcycle. Ms Jackson suffered a number of serious injuries, including facial scarring, nerve damage and an above-elbow arm amputation. The liability insurance policy for the film did not include cover for injury to the cast or key crew. In this blog, Sam Cuthbert of 12 King’s Bench Walk considers Ms Jackson’s claim before the High Court of South Africa. The full judgment, which includes an interesting analysis of the defence of volenti non fit injuria, can be found here. Continue reading “Consent to risk and movie stunts: a recent ruling from South Africa”

Italian torpedo still applies to Lugano proceedings

The UK recently formally requested accession to the Lugano Convention. This is likely to represent the touchstone for English jurisdiction in the near future. How timely, then, is the judgment of Waksman J last week in Mastermelt Ltd v Siegfried Evionnaz SA [2020] EWHC 927 (QB), which neatly highlights one of the persisting deficiencies of that scheme? Continue reading “Italian torpedo still applies to Lugano proceedings”

Package travel, aviation, and the role of local law

In Palaiokrassus & Tsakou v Black and Green Trading Limited (Unreported) 7 April 2020, QBD, Master Thornett dismissed an application to set aside default judgment brought under CPR r. 13.9 and r. 3.9. The case concerned claims for personal injuries suffered in an air crash which occurred during a package holiday in Ethiopia. In dismissing the application, Master Thornett set out reasons that will be of interest to aviation and travel practitioners.

This blog is by Max Archer, who appeared for the Claimants on instruction by Stewarts Law. Continue reading “Package travel, aviation, and the role of local law”

Coronavirus mini-series: (6) a big problem for service on EU-domiciled defendants

Last week, we noted that service of documents abroad via the Foreign Process Section of the Royal Courts of Justice had been suspended. The implications of that decision are significant. Specifically, it may cause huge problems for service in cases involving EU-domiciled defendants. On one analysis, it will in some cases be impossible to serve. Continue reading “Coronavirus mini-series: (6) a big problem for service on EU-domiciled defendants”

Coronavirus mini-series: (5) holiday refunds and consumer rights

This blog by Cressida Mawdesley-Thomas of 12 King’s Bench Walk highlights that travellers’ rights to refunds under the Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 (“PTR 2018”) have not changed.

There has been no official guidance from the European Commission on the Package Travel Directive 2015 in the context of COVID-19. However, the guidance issued by ABTA (formerly the Association of British Travel Agents), a trade body which offers “advice and guidance to you, the travelling public, as well as leading the travel industry”, is arguably inconsistent with the position in law, which remains that travellers still have a right to a refund within 14 days if the travel provider cancels the trip on account of COVID-19. In England and Wales these rights can only be abrogated by retrospective legislation.

Retrospective legislation is rare and involves Government and Parliament carefully weighing up competing public interests. While travellers’ rights have been subject to amendment in some European countries, they have not yet been in England and Wales. In a sea of misinformation, travellers need to know their right to a refund is unchanged. Continue reading “Coronavirus mini-series: (5) holiday refunds and consumer rights”

Coronavirus mini-series: (4) Foreign Process Section

Yesterday, Senior Master Fontaine issued guidance in relation to the work of the Foreign Process Section of the Queen’s Bench Division during the coronavirus pandemic.

In summary:

  • The FPS is unable to process tracked postal service requests. Service of judicial and extra-judicial documents is suspended.
  • The processing of requests for service of court documents on parties out of the jurisdiction is also suspended.
  • Parties can attempt service without the involvement of the FPS in compliance with the Service Regulation, the Hague Service Convention or any other relevant bi-lateral treaty.
  • Service in a country which requires service through foreign governments, judicial authorities or British Consular authorities, which would normally be transmitted through the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, is suspended.
  • Examinations of witnesses in respect of requests received from foreign courts are generally suspended.
  • Requests for registration of foreign judgments are not being processed.

Coronavirus mini-series: (3) furlough and companies in administration

Businesses in the international travel industry have been among the hardest hit by the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Many of those businesses are likely to face difficult choices in the coming weeks and months, including, in some extreme cases, whether to go into administration.

In this blog post, Cressida Mawdesley-Thomas and Tim Goodwin of 12 King’s Bench Walk look at a decision handed down on Easter Monday by Mr Justice Snowden, which provides some helpful and timely guidance as to how the CJRS operates in the particular context of companies going into administration.

The latest government guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the “CJRS”) is available here. HM Treasury’s direction to HMRC regarding the application of the CJRS can be found here. Continue reading “Coronavirus mini-series: (3) furlough and companies in administration”

Coronavirus mini-series: (2) legislation

With the country in a state of almost total lockdown, now is as good a time as any to consider the extraordinary legislation brought in by the government to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic and its implications for the international travel industry. This blog post, by Spencer Turner of 12 King’s Bench Walk, is the second in our mini-series on this subject. Continue reading “Coronavirus mini-series: (2) legislation”

Supreme Court rules on “weaker party” in cross-border insurance claims

Although the Supreme Court’s rulings on vicarious liability and surrogacy costs may have stolen the limelight yesterday, eagle-eyed readers will have spotted the important jurisdiction decision in Aspen Underwriting Ltd & Ors v Credit Europe Bank NV [2020] UKSC 11. The Supreme Court, in overruling the Court of Appeal, made important comments on identification of the “weaker party” for the purposes of the insurance provisions of the Brussels Regulations. Continue reading “Supreme Court rules on “weaker party” in cross-border insurance claims”