In this blog, which follows on from Philip Mead’s recent post explaining the legal implications the Government’s recent White Paper (Cm 9593), Patrick Vincent suggests that the Lugano Convention has been wrongly worded and wrongly translated – but that even if corrected it will not help the UK achieve post-Brexit civil judicial cooperation with the EU. Continue reading Brexit and the Government White Paper: Are the Civil Judicial Cooperation plans Realistic?
This blog by Philip Mead of 12 King’s Bench Walk describes the approach adopted by the Government to negotiations with the EU as set out in the White Paper (Cm 9593) published on 12 July 2018, with particular reference to international and travel claims involving employment and personal injury. Continue reading The White Paper on The Future Relationship Between the United Kingdom and the European Union: Brexit Trifle or Dog’s Dinner?
This blog is by Lois Aldred of 12 King’s Bench Walk.
The Court of Appeal recently handed down its judgment in AAA & Others v Unilever PLC and Unilever Tea Kenya Limited. This is the latest in a series of Court of Appeal considerations of the extent of corporate liability of parent companies for acts or omissions pertaining to the operations of subsidiaries.
The Claimants were employees of Unilever Tea Kenya Limited (‘UTKL’) who lived and worked on UTKL’s tea plantation in the southern Rift Valley of Kenya. They claimed against both Unilever and UTKL in tort for failing to protect them from the harm they suffered as a result of inter-tribal violence in the immediate aftermath of the 2007 Kenyan presidential election. Continue reading AAA & ORS v (1) UNILEVER PLC (2) UNILEVER TEA KENYA LTD (2018)  EWCA Civ 1532: the corporate veil remains a tightly woven garment
In this blog post, Kate Boakes of 12 King’s Bench Walk provides a fresh perspective on the implications of the Supreme Court’s decision in Four Seasons Holdings Incorporated v Brownlie  UKSC 80. The entire judgment, including in particular the Court’s lengthy obiter discussion of the functioning of the CPR’s jurisdictional gateways, is required reading for private international lawyers. Continue reading Service out of the jurisdiction and ‘damage’ – our take on Four Seasons Holdings Incorporated v Brownlie
In this blog post, Max Archer of 12 King’s Bench Walk considers the recent decision of Spring v Ministry of Defence & Evangelisches Krankenhaus Bielefeld gGmbH  EWHC 3012 (QB). Master Yoxall considered issues of jurisdiction and joinder out of time for limitation purposes under the Recast Brussels Regulation. Continue reading Jurisdiction, Joinder and Limitation: Spring v Ministry of Defence & Anor
This blog is by John-Paul Swoboda of 12 King’s Bench Walk.
Chandler v Cape  EWCA Civ 525 was described in the Economist as “A little-noticed court case with big implications”. That was because it was the first time a parent company had successfully been sued for, as the Economist put it, the sins of their subsidiary. The prediction that there would be big implications appears, with the Lungowe case, to be coming to pass. The Lungowe case concerns 1,800 claimants, all of them Zambians alleging personal injury and property damage in Zambia whilst in the employment of a Zambian company (‘KCM’) due to an alleged toxic discharge from KCM’s mine into the water table. In other words, the Lungowe case concerns the export of huge group litigation, from a country with little access to justice, to the English Courts. The export of this group litigation was made possible, in this author’s opinion, by the Court of Appeal’s decision in Chandler and the European Court of Justice’s decision in Owusu v Jackson (Case C-281/02)  QB 801 which allows claimants to anchor jurisdiction in English courts where one of the proposed defendants is domiciled in England. In this case the first defendant or ‘Vedanta’ was the anchoring defendant and the parent company of KCM. Continue reading Lungowe & Ors v Vedanta Resources Plc v Konkola Copper Mines Plc  EWCA Civ 1528: Anchoring defendants, and suing the parent for the sins of their subsidiaries
It should be noted that the view expressed below has been indirectly confirmed by the recent CJEU decision in Case C-368/16, Assens Havn v Navigators Management (UK) Limited (Judgment of the Eighth Chamber, 13 July 2017), discussed in detail in a post by Philip Mead of 12 King’s Bench Walk here.
Certain insurance companies show a distinct lack of enthusiasm when it comes to legislation intended to protect consumers from the type of abuse that the larger companies can have a “natural” inclination to perpetrate. One of the tools they may use occasionally could be called legal subterfuge, perpetrated with the intention of evading the consequences of legal provisions set in place to benefit the weaker contracting party.
An example of this can be seen in civil liability insurance policies for hotel establishments in which, typically, some companies have the practice of including clauses on exclusion from cover in relation to judicial claims brought abroad as part of the terms and conditions. In other words, under the guise of a cover limitation clause, they in fact introduce a clause that limits geographical jurisdiction of the courts. In doing so, consumers are prevented from bringing a claim before the Court where they are domiciled, even though this is in principle guaranteed under EU law.
Such a ruling was issued, we say wrongly, by a Judge hearing the case of Williams vs. Mapfre at Chester County Court (United Kingdom). Let us see how this came about. Continue reading Guest Post – Williams vs Mapfre: The justice system of England and Wales slips up badly