Commercial Court dislikes pre-action disclosure in prof neg claims: even in mega-auditor’s negligence action – Hailsham Chambers

‘In Carillion v KPMG, the liquidators of this once substantial company sought pre-action disclosure from its former auditors. They intend to bring professional negligence proceedings for not detecting that the financial statements were unreliable. The Commercial Court refused the application. One might think that given auditors’ negligence claims in large part turn on professional judgment as to the audit procedures performed, the evidence obtained and the conclusions drawn, clear sight of the materials produced and relied on by the auditors would enable better focussed pleadings. Nonetheless the Commercial Court refused the application (which had admittedly spun into a substantial hearing with apparently more than £500,000 costs on each side). It pointed out that generally such applications were unlikely to succeed in Commercial Court cases and on the facts was not appropriate. The Judge seems to have been most impressed by the fact that Carillion had been able to articulate a detailed case in negligence already, rendering pre-action disclosure perhaps redundant and likely to be duplicated when it came to conventional disclosure.’

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Hailsham Chambers, June 2020


High Court rejects attempt to adjourn £250m trial because of virus – Litigation Futures

‘The High Court has rejected an application to adjourn a five-week trial of a £250m insolvency claim because of the coronavirus pandemic.’

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Litigation Futures, 9th April 2020


In the matter of Comet Group Limited (in Liquidation) [2018] EWHC 1378 (Ch) – Wilberforce Chambers

Posted February 11th, 2020 in administrators, disciplinary procedures, liquidators, news by sally

‘This judgment is an important one. It concerned an application by the joint liquidators of Comet (formerly joint administrators) for directions permitting them not to carry out any further investigation into the validity of the fixed and floating charge held by a single purpose vehicle (“HAL”) that had been granted by Comet under a year before it collapsed into administration. The joint liquidators also sought a direction that they be permitted to transfer a further tranche of funds to HAL that had been realised in the administration.’

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Wilberforce Chambers, 5th February 2020


Liquidator’s firm liable for opponent’s costs after funding litigation –

Posted January 13th, 2020 in company directors, costs, insolvency, limitations, liquidators, news, third parties by tracey

‘The High Court has characterised a liquidator’s firm as a real party to the litigation which it funded as it stood to make financial gain from the action and was therefore found not to be a pure funder facilitating access to justice.’

Full Story, 10th January 2020


Adjudication and insolvency – guidance from the Court of Appeal – Practical Law: Construction Blog

‘Summer 2018 will be remembered as a special time by many readers of this blog: whether it was the spectacular weather, the giddy heights hit by the England football team, or Fraser J’s decision in Michael J Lonsdale (Electrical) Ltd v Bresco Electrical Services Ltd (In Liquidation), it was a summer to remember.’

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Practical Law: Construction Blog, 6th February 2019


Court uses correspondence to clarify settlement wording –

Posted June 6th, 2018 in drafting, insolvency, liquidators, news by tracey

‘Companies and lawyers must be clear and unambiguous when drafting settlement agreements, a court ruling has reminded them. A liquidator had to drop some claims after a court used correspondence to clarify exactly what was meant by the phrase “whole of the claim” in a compromise agreement. The ruling does not affect the liquidator’s claim against another person because she was not mentioned in the correspondence.’

Full Story, 5th June 2018


High Court: up to directors to prove they took ‘every step’ to minimise potential loss to creditors –

Posted August 10th, 2015 in bankruptcy, company directors, fraud, insolvency, interpretation, liquidators, news by sally

‘It is up to the directors of an insolvent company to prove that they took “every step” to minimise the potential loss to creditors as soon as they knew that the company could not reasonably avoid liquidation, the High Court has confirmed.’

Full story, 7th August 2015


Resolving the rules of insolvency – 11 Stone Buildings

Posted July 28th, 2015 in appeals, consent, costs, cross-claims, insolvency, liquidators, news, winding up by sally

‘Restructuring & Insolvency analysis: In what ways has Re Kingstons Investments Ltd shed light on longstanding ambiguities in the Insolvency Rules 1986? Jamie Riley, commercial litigator at 11 Stone Buildings, explores the case and explains why the final decision will be so important for insolvency lawyers.’

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11 Stone Buildings, June 2015


Important judgment on liquidators’ ability to obtain documents – RPC Commercial Disputes Blog

Posted March 13th, 2015 in disclosure, documents, Hong Kong, liquidators, news, winding up by sally

‘In an important judgment handed down recently by the Court of First Instance in Hong Kong, the companies judge has ruled on the ambit of the power to order a person to produce documents to a provisional liquidator pursuant to section 221(3) of the Companies (Winding-Up and Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance.(1) For now and pending any appeal, the judgment confirms that the scope of documents “relating to the company” that have to be produced to a liquidator (pursuant to section 221(3) of the Ordinance) is narrower than the matters in respect of which a person can be examined on oath concerning the “affairs of the company” (sections 221(1) and (2)). In so doing, the judgment gives a more literal interpretation of the power to order production pursuant to section 221(3) without reference to section 221(1).’

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RPC Commercial Disputes Blog,


Abbey Forwarding Ltd (in liquidation) v Revenue and Customs Commissioners – WLR Daily

Posted February 11th, 2015 in damages, injunctions, law reports, liquidators, winding up by sally

Abbey Forwarding Ltd (in liquidation) v Revenue and Customs Commissioners [2015] EWHC 225 (Ch); [2015] WLR (D) 53

‘The undertaking in damages given on the appointment of a provisional liquidator did not automatically terminate on the making of a winding up order so as to deprive the court of jurisdiction to enforce the undertaking by ordering an inquiry as to damages.’

WLR Daily, 6th February 2015


Modified Universalism – Privy to Singular Clarification – RPC Commercial Disputes Blog

Posted January 27th, 2015 in Hong Kong, insolvency, liquidators, news, privacy, winding up by sally

‘While most jurisdictions provide liquidators with wide investigative powers to locate and realise assets locally, the exercise of such powers becomes more complicated when the assets are situated overseas. As more and more businesses expand globally and corporate structures become equally more complex, the liquidators’ task becomes more problematic in winding up such companies.’

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RPC Commercial Disputes Blog,


Krys and another v Stichting Shell Pensioenfonds – WLR Daily

Posted December 8th, 2014 in foreign jurisdictions, injunctions, insolvency, law reports, liquidators by sally

Krys and another v Stichting Shell Pensioenfonds [2014] UKPC 41; [2014] WLR (D) 516

‘There is no principle in insolvency proceedings which prevents an anti-suit injunction being made against a foreign creditor so as to restrain him from resorting to the courts of his own country. A creditor may not seek or enforce an order from a foreign court which will result in his enjoying prior access to any part of the insolvent estate.’

WLR Daily, 26th November 2014


Supreme Court overturns liquidator’s challenge to pre-liquidation security granted over golf club –

Posted July 9th, 2014 in appeals, hotels, liquidators, news, Scotland, Supreme Court by sally

‘A recent decision by the UK’s highest court reinforces how important it is for litigants to succeed in the court of first instance as chances of success on appeal are getting slimmer an expert has said.’

Full story, 8th July 2014


Henderson (Respondent) v Foxworth Investments Limited and another (Appellants) – Supreme Court

Posted July 3rd, 2014 in appeals, hotels, insolvency, law reports, liquidators, Scotland, Supreme Court by sally

Henderson (Respondent) v Foxworth Investments Limited and another (Appellants) [2014] UKSC 41 (YouTube)

Supreme Court, 2nd July 2014


High Court restricts litigation privilege but gives pointers for future applications, says expert –

Posted September 17th, 2013 in documents, liquidators, news, privilege by sally

“OPINION: It will be harder than ever for companies to keep certain kinds of documents from being opened up to scrutiny after a recent High Court decision. The ruling does, however, give helpful guidance on what organisations have to do to secure and maintain litigation privilege.”

Full story, 16th September 2013


Liquidators are not data controllers under the Data Protection Act 1998 – Technology Law Update

Posted September 2nd, 2013 in bankruptcy, data protection, liquidators, loans, mortgages, news by sally

“The High Court has found that liquidators under a voluntary liquidation are not data controllers for the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1998 (“DPA” or “Act”) and so are not personally responsible for compliance with the Act.”

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Technology Law Update, 2nd September 2013


Subject access – important new high court judgment – Panopticon

Posted August 9th, 2013 in data protection, liquidators, news by sally

“It is a strange feature of the DPA subject access regime that, despite having extremely far reaching legal effects, to date it only rarely been the subject of judicial analysis. This is in no small part because the costs of bringing disputes over the application of the legislation before the courts are generally prohibitive. As readers of this blog will know, there have been some fairly recent county court judgments which have considered the application of the regime (see in particular the posts on the judgments in Elliott and Abadir here and here). However, jurisprudence emanating from the High Court has been decidedly thin on the ground. Today however the High Court has handed down an important judgment on the application of the regime: In the Matter of the Southern Pacific Personal Loans Limited [2013] EWHC 2485 (Admin). Readers will want to note in particular that part of the judgment where the court considered the relevance of the applicant’s purpose or motive in making a subject access request (SAR) – as discussed below.”

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Panopticon, 8th August 2013


In re Atrium Training Services Ltd; Smailes and another v McNally and others; In re Connor Williams Ltd; Smailes and another v McNally and others – WLR Daily

Posted June 13th, 2013 in civil procedure rules, disclosure, law reports, liquidators, time limits by sally

In re Atrium Training Services Ltd; Smailes and another v McNally and others; In re Connor Williams Ltd; Smailes and another v McNally and others [2013] EWHC 1562 (Ch); [2013] WLR (D) 225

“The court must exercise its discretion when considering an application for an extension of time for compliance with a deadline stipulated in a court order by simply having regard to the overriding objective of the court to deal with cases justly pursuant to CPR r 1.1(1), notwithstanding that CPR r 1.1(2) had been amended to include the enforcement of compliance with court orders.”

WLR Daily, 7th June 2013


In re GP Aviation Group International Ltd (in liquidation) – WLR Daily

Posted June 13th, 2013 in appeals, insolvency, law reports, liquidators by sally

In re GP Aviation Group International Ltd (in liquidation) [2013] EWHC 1447 (C; [2013] WLR (D) 223

“A bare right to appeal was not property within the meaning of section 436 of the Insolvency Act 1986.”

WLR Daily, 4th June 2013


Ricoh Europe Holdings BV and others v Spratt and another – WLR Daily

Posted February 21st, 2013 in appeals, law reports, liquidators, winding up by sally

Ricoh Europe Holdings BV and others v Spratt and another [2013] EWCA Civ 92; [2013] WLR (D) 70

“A liquidator who had already valued a creditor’s contingent claims pursuant to rule 4.86 of the Insolvency Rules 1986 and so admitted them to proof in the amount of the valuation was not under a duty to provide for the contingency in full by making a reserve against any distribution to members.”

WLR Daily, 19th February 2013