27 April 2020
Nick Pointon, together with Jersey Advocate Steven Chiddicks, has been representing Consultant Ophthalmologist Mr Amar Alwitry in long running proceedings before the Jersey courts, arising out of his unlawful dismissal in 2012. The liability phase of these proceedings has now concluded, with the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council declining the States Employment Board’s renewed application for permission to appeal, following detailed written argument. Significantly, the Privy Council accepted the submissions made on behalf of Mr Alwitry that the proposed appeal gave rise to no arguable point of law.
In February 2019, following a two week trial focussed on questions of liability, the Royal Court of Jersey found that Mr Alwitry had been unlawfully dismissed in breach of contract (SEB v Alwitry  JRC 014). The SEB’s first appeal against that decision was heard and dismissed by an extraordinary sitting of the Court of Appeal (Sir William Bailhache, Bailiff of Jersey, Lord Anderson of Ipswich KBE and Jonathan Crow QC), in SEB v Alwitry  JCA 134. The SEB, having been declined leave by the Court of Appeal, renewed their application directly to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council.
Her Majesty The Queen, on the advice of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, refused permission at a meeting of the Privy Council held during lockdown at Windsor Castle on 3 April 2020 (SEB v Alwitry, JCPC 2019/0105).
The decision is a significant one, recognising at the highest judicial level that the right of the SEB as employer to dismiss Jersey consultants on notice without cause has been fettered by the express terms of their contract. This case exemplifies the possibility, alluded to by Baroness Hale JSC and Lord Mance JSC in Edwards v Chesterfield NHS  UKSC 58, that an employee may have the contractual security of indefinite employment absent lawful cause for their dismissal, thereby falling outside the so-called “Johnson exclusion area” created by Johnson v Unisys Ltd  UKHL 13. The practical consequence is that Mr Alwitry’s claim to damages is not capped by reference to any notice period.
The quantum phase of this long running litigation will now begin. Mr Alwitry continues to be supported by the British Medical Association.
27 February 2020
|Natasha Dzameh successfully represented an administrator in joined trials in the High Court. The first concerned a claim by the administrator for an injunction, an account and other relief in relation to a property he alleged was the main asset in the Deceased’s estate. Natasha secured a £625,000 freezing injunction in the interim resulting in recovery of the main asset prior to trial. An order for an account was secured at trial despite the Defendant attempting to offset a six figure sum she claimed was owed to her.|
The second trial was a claim by 3 individuals who would be residuary beneficiaries if a 1988 uncertified copy of a will was propounded for. The administrator contended that the presumption of revocation applied.
10 February 2020
Asha represented the local authority in this 5 day final hearing in care proceedings concerning allegations of inflicted injury. She secured significant findings of physical and emotional abuse against both parents. Instructed at the case management stage, Asha drafted a comprehensive schedule of findings and ensured that the best evidence in respect of the child’s allegations was obtained.
10 February 2020
Asha acted for the local authority in this 4 day final hearing involving significant neglect over a number of years. The local authority was undergoing a serious case review in relation to this case following criticism by the ISW and guardian. Asha advised the local authority in conference prior to the hearing. At the hearing she marshalled the voluminous evidence and secured the findings and orders sought by the local authority.
10 February 2020
Asha represented the father assisted by his intermediary in this final hearing in care proceedings. She submitted that in the interests of fairness and the need to consider parenting with adequate support, the father’s needs and abilities should have been assessed earlier in the process. The judgement was written in a plain English format for her client to understand and criticisms were made of the local authority not following best practice for adults with learning disabilities in line with Asha’s submissions.
10 February 2020
In this 5 day finding of fact hearing, Asha represented the mother who was in the pool of perpetrators in relation to significant bruising to an immobile baby. She was able to process a voluminous amount of police disclosure served on the morning of the trial in order to maintain the listing and she was praised by the judge for her ‘thorough’ cross examination of a paediatrician and her ‘detailed’ written submissions.
10 January 2020
Matthew O’Regan recently represented Swedish technology group Tobii AB before the Competition Appeal Tribunal in its challenge to the decision of the Competition and Markets Authority that Tobii’s acquisition of Smartbox, a British supplier of augmentative and assistive communications products, restricted competition and should be prohibited, with Tobii being required to sell Smartbox.
16 December 2019
Alex acted for the third defendant who challenged the validity of her late mother’s will and, in the alternative, pursued a proprietary estoppel claim against the mother’s house. The proprietary estoppel claim succeeded, with the trial judge (HHJ Matthews) stating that “In my judgment, this is a paradigm case in which the expectation of the third defendant created by the promise of the deceased should be made good”. As a result the judge declared that the property should be transferred to the third defendant or her nominee. In a separate costs judgment the Judge made a substantial costs order against the claimant.
14 November 2019
Zoe Saunders successfully represented the father in this matter at final hearing in the High Court, resisting an application for leave to permanently remove the child to Kazakhstan. Zoe has particular expertise in cases involving an international element and international relocation cases are often complex and difficult.
13 November 2019
Andrew McLaughlin successfully defended a claim for damages arising out of a fatal road traffic accident in which the claimant motorcyclist, Mark Gilbert, collided with a cyclist, the late Stuart Payne. Mr Gilbert suffered very serious personal injuries for which he sought to claim hundreds of thousands of pounds from the estate of the deceased.
The court found the claimant was fundamentally dishonest in giving multiple accounts of what had happened, which varied depending on the audience to whom he was speaking.
30 September 2019
Andrew McLaughlin, ranked in the Chambers UK industrial disease spotlight table, has successfully defended a public house in Manchester against an occupational disease employers’ liability claim brought by a former chef who alleged he was exposed to aspergillus fumigatus mould spores over several years. He claimed to have developed acute invasive aspergillosis, a life-threatening condition, and occupational asthma.
16 September 2019
Personal injury barrister, James Marwick, secured the dismissal of a £200,000 personal injury claim brought against the City of Wolverhampton Council after a two-day trial before Recorder Benson QC earlier this month at the Birmingham Civil Justice Centre in the case of PH v City of Wolverhampton Council.