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Law Notes Conflict of Laws Notes

Jurisdiction Under English National Rules Notes

Updated Jurisdiction Under English National Rules Notes

Conflict of Laws Notes

Conflict of Laws

Approximately 333 pages

Conflict of Laws notes fully updated for recent exams in the UK. These notes cover all the major conflicts of laws cases and so are perfect for anyone doing a law degree in the UK or, given the international nature of this subject, these notes also make a great supplement for those studying law abroad.

These notes were formed directly from a reading of the cases and main texts and are vigorous, concise and very well written. Everything is conveniently split up by topic as you can see by the l...

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National rules on jurisdiction


  • Discretionary: depends on whether English court is appropriate forum

  • Applies to cases outside scope of Art 1 under BIR (including arbitration)

  • Applies to cases involving defendants not domiciled in MS

When does the English court have jurisdiction under national rules?

  1. If D is present in England when claim form is served

  2. If D submits to the court’s jurisdiction

  3. If claim falls within grounds of jurisdiction set out in para 3.1 of Practice Direction 6B of Civil Procedure Rules

Situation 1 – service of claim for ‘as of right’

The method of service is to be found in CPR 6.5 ? personal service or post.

Grounds for service in England

  1. Presence

1 – Individuals

Defendant domiciled in Member State (including in England) could be served under rules laid out below but jurisdiction in English Court is determined by Brussels I regulation.

Natural persons
  • Natural person not domiciled in MS and jurisdiction is not determined by provisions of BIR (apply regardless of domicile), then English court has jurisdiction if claim form is served on D in England (r6.9)

  • Service of claim form by leaving it with an individual (CPR r. 6.5(3)(a))

    • Good service even if individual defendant was only there for short time (Maharanee of Baroda v Wildenstein – jurisdiction could be asserted based on mere transient physical presence, with no subject matter connection)

    • Service based on last known address of individual defendant (CPR r. 6.9(2)(1))

    • City & Country Properties v Kamali: held, service at residence of defendant is good service notwithstanding that D had not been present in jurisdiction at the time of service. (i.e. temporary absence doesn’t matter)

    • If no longer living in England, defendant who was not present should not be subject to jurisdiction.

    • Fraudulent induction of D to come to England to serve form would lead to form being struck out for abuse of process (Watkins v North American Land and Timber Co)

Individual challenge: jurisdiction of court on basis that there is more appropriate forum (CPR Part 11)

2 - Companies

Legal persons

Company domiciled in England: can be sued in England

Company domiciled in another MS: may be sued in England, if English court has jurisdiction under Ch II of BIR

Company not domiciled in MS, but has place of business in England: can be sued in England, in accordance with provisions of the CA 2006 or CPR r6.9.

Brussels I Regulation: A company which has a set in a Member State is domiciled in that Member State. Therefore, rules of jurisdiction in the Brussels I Regulation would apply. (NB rules below therefore only relate to method of service, rather than jurisdictional issues)

CPR rule 6.9: supplements rule in CA 2006 – court’s jurisdiction is as a result extended to most cases where foreign company has business presence in England.

Non-foreign company

Incorporated or registered in England and Wales – serve at principal office or at any place where it carries on its activities which has a real connection with the claim (CPR 6.9)

OR serve at registered office/on any director/secretary under Companies Act 2006, s1139

Foreign company (Part 34, CA 2006)

Can be served at ‘any place within the jurisdiction where the corporation carries on its activities or any place of business of the company within the jurisdiction (CPR r.6.9.)

Foreign company with established place of business? Required to register names and addresses of officers on which it can be served.

Cannot serve on one of its officers merely by being present in England (SSL International Plc v TTK LIG Ltd and Others)

Document can be served on overseas company by leaving it at/sending I by post to registered address of any person authorized to receive service of docs and resides in the UK (s1139(2)(a))

Place of business

Dunlop Ltd v Cudell & Co:

Facts: Defendant was German tyre company hired stand at exhibition at Crystal Palace. Had exclusive use of stand for 9 days and name of company was prominently displayed. Two agents took orders during that time.

Held: company established place of business in England at the stand, therefore service on officer was good service.

Re Oreil Ltd: must be specific location in order for it to be a ‘fixed and reasonably permanent place’

Cleveland Museum of Art v Capricorn: must be a place at which the company’s business is done. Here, proved by evidence of drivers who regularly dropped off clients and artworks at the home of one of the directors of company dealing in art.

Rakusens v Baser Ambulaj: an agent of that place can bind the company contractually. If no such agent exists, it is hard to say that it is the company’s business which is being conducted from that place.

3 – Service on agent of defendant

CPR r. 6.12

If claim relates to:

  1. Contract;

  2. Entered into by an agent within the jurisdiction

Then, foreign principal can be served via that agent. But agent must:

  1. Still have authority of D

  2. Court has granted permission

4 – Forum non-conveniens

  • If jurisdiction is merely based on presence, dispute may have limited connection with England.

  • Court’s discretion under doctrine of forum non conveniens: stay proceedings

    • D must show there is another forum where parties’ dispute is more closely connected

    • Will not be granted if substantial justice will not be done in the more closely connected forum

B) Submission of defendant

  • D’s submission is sufficient to confer jurisdiction on the English court

Yes – amounts to submission:

  • Voluntary steps taken by D to defend claim on merits amounts to submission

    • Once submitted, cannot apply for stay on basis of forum non conveniens afterwards

  • Applying to strike out part of claim (The Messiniaki Tolmi)

  • Served a defence (Sage v Double A Hydraulics Ltd)

  • Bringing action in England, claimant submits for any counterclaim made by a D

  • D who counterclaims in same/for related matter in same proceedings (Glencore International AG v Metro...

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