JFSC v A.P. Black (Jersey) Ltd, Alister Black, A.P. Black Ltd and Eila Black

CourtRoyal Court
JudgeH. W. B. Page
Judgment Date19 June 2007
Neutral Citation[2007] JRC 118
Date19 June 2007

[2007] JRC 118


(Samedi Division)


H. W. B. Page, Esq., Commissioner, sitting alone.

Jersey Financial Services Commission
A. P. Black (Jersey) Limited
First Respondent
Alistair Pollock Pedersen Black
Third Respondent
A. P. Black Limited
Fifth Respondent
Eila Anneli Black
Sixth Respondent

Advocate M. L. A. Pallot for the Representor.

The Respondents appeared for themselves.


Britannia Building Society v. Milborn [2007] JRC 001 .

Watkins v. Egglishaw [2002] JLR 1 .

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council v. Booth [2000] COD 338 .

Ani v. Barclays Private Bank and Trust Limited and H.M. Attorney General [2004] TRC 69 .



Leave to appeal is sought from certain costs rulings made by this Court in its judgment delivered on 6 th December 2006 concerning

  • (i) the terms on which the Representor ("the Commission") should be entitled to discontinue these proceedings against the First Respondent ("Blacks Jersey"), the Third Respondent ("Mr. Black") and the Fifth Respondent ("Blacks London"), and

  • (ii) the appropriate order to be made following an unsuccessful attempt by the Commission to join Mrs. Black as an additional respondent to the proceedings.


As to the first of these, the application for leave is by Mr. Black, Blacks Jersey and Blacks London; and as to the second, the application for leave is by Mrs. Black. The history of these proceedings is set out in the Introduction section of this Court's judgment of 6 th December 2006. As is apparent from that judgment, the Black Respondents have represented themselves since September last year when they withdrew instructions from Crill Canavan.


The grounds of appeal, as served are contained in a short document headed "Grounds of Appeal" and a 40-page "Skeleton Argument: Leave to Appeal" served on 19 th January 2007. These are the composite representations of all three Respondents and also of Mrs. Black. The Commission's 16-page skeleton opposing leave was served on 30 th January and a Response by the Black Respondent's was served on 9 th February. By agreement of the parties, and notwithstanding the references to "Skeleton Arguments", I am requested to determine this application on the basis of these written submissions without an oral hearing.


The effect of the 6 th December judgment, as summarised in paragraph 50, was as follows:-

  • (i) the Commission was given leave to discontinue proceedings on terms that all existing costs orders would remain in force but no other order for costs would be made (other than as provided in (iii) below);

  • (ii) Mrs. Black's application for an order for costs in her favour following the striking out of the claim against her was refused;

  • (iii) the extent of the Commission's wasted costs arising from the failure of Mr. Black and the two Black companies to comply with the Court's orders of June 2003 and otherwise to participate in the proceedings for the next 17 months or so, was to be referred to the Taxing Master for inquiry and report for the purpose described in the judgment; and, subject to such report, there would be a summary award of costs in the Commission's favour against Mr. Black, Blacks Jersey and Blacks London of £60,000 or such other sum as the Court thinks appropriate (the Commission was invited to propose detailed terms for giving effect to the intention of the Court).


As regards the costs of and incidental to the various applications with which the judgment was concerned, I said "my provisional thinking is that in respect of (i) and (ii) above, there should be an award of costs in the Commission's favour; and that as regards (iii), the parties should each bear their own costs, given the novelty of the orders that I am making" (paragraph 51).


The Black Respondents also ask, on this application, that in the event of leave to appeal being granted, the current injunction freezing Blacks Jersey's account with Abbey National in Jersey be lifted so that any money held by that company may be available to them for the purpose of pursuing their appeals.


. As to the guiding principles governing the grant or refusal of leave to appeal, I ventured to summarise them relatively recently in the case of Britannia Building Society v. Milborn [2007] JRC 001.

Discontinuance against Mr. Black, Blacks Jersey and Blacks London

The Black Respondents' submissions on this application are, for the most part, a re-iteration of their earlier submissions made on the occasion of the hearing in November last year which resulted in the 6 th December ruling. I have, nonetheless, considered them fully and carefully, trying as best I can to look at the matter afresh. In reading their new submissions, I have also endeavoured (once again) to make full and fair allowance for the fact that both these and the earlier submissions were and are the work of a litigant in person rather than a professional advocate and to have particular regard to the general observations made by Mr. Black (and Mrs. Black) in the Introduction section of their Skeleton Argument, though these considerations need to be kept within reasonable bounds. This is not a case in which the litigants are inarticulate or wholly incapable of helping themselves. They were actively engaged in the world of relatively complex finance, and it is plain that Mr. Black is a man of intelligence and sophistication and - as litigants in person go — is by no means incapable of speaking for himself and for Mrs. Black, as, for the most part he did.


The fact is that nothing that I have read causes me to think that the views expressed in the judgment given on 6 th December and the resulting costs order made on giving leave to the Commission to discontinue were misguided or unfair.


There is, however, the question whether leave would be justified on the point of principle as to the extent to which it can be appropriate, in relation to costs issues, for a court to have...

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2 cases
  • A P Black (Jersey) Ltd, Mr Alistair Black, Mrs Elia Black and AP Black Ltd (UK) v JFSC
    • Jersey
    • Court of Appeal
    • 23 January 2008
    ...(Jersey) Law 1988. JFSC v A.P. Black (J) Ltd and Ors [2005] JRC 119A . JFSC v A.P. Black and Ors [2006] JRC 182 . JFSC v Black and Ors [2007] JRC 118 . JFSC v Black [2007] JRC 171 . Re Esteem Settlement [2001] JLR 169 . Court of Appeal (Jersey) Law 1961. Civil Litigation O'Hare and Hills (8......
  • JFSC v Black
    • Jersey
    • Royal Court
    • 21 February 2013
    ...Sixth Respondent Advocate M. L. A. Pallot for the Representor. Mr and Mrs Black appeared in person. Authorities JFSC -v- Black and Others [2007] JRC 118 . JFSC -v- Black [2007] JRC 171 . Black and Others -v- JFSC [2008] JCA 008 . Black -v- JFSC [2008] JCA 036 . Investment — Costs judgment. ......

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