Get up to date with the Spring 2022 edition of the brief case, our litigation newsletter

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1. CMA investigations: a balancing act between the interests of open justice and confidentiality

In a recent hearing of an appeal, the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) considered the issue of confidential information provided to the CMA by third parties and its subsequent use in related appeals.

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2. Practice direction pitfalls: trial witness statements in the business and property courts

Since 6 April 2021, witness statements for use at trial in the Business and Property Courts must comply with the new Practice Direction 57AC (regardless of when the claim was commenced).

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3. Under the surgeon's knife: aggregation dissected

In Spire Healthcare Limited v Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Limited, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that an individual's deliberate and dishonest conduct can be the unifying causative factor to trigger aggregation provisions in an insurance policy.

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4. How long can insurers delay payment of a valid claim?

The High Court has found that, an insured, Quadra was not entitled to remedies for late payment under s13A Insurance Act 2015 as there had been reasonable grounds for the underwriters to dispute the claim, and the identified failings with underwriters' handling of the claim had occurred within what the judge considered to have been a reasonable time for payment.

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5. Disclosure obligations – celebrity no exception to the rules

The claims in Sheeran v Chokri and Vardy v Rooney have attracted significant amounts of publicity for their subject matter – alleged copyright infringement by Sheeran in his song "The Shape of You" and the libel claim in relation to the"Wagatha Christie" social media saga.  However, both have also involved several applications about the scope of the parties' disclosure obligations.

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6. The Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act 2022 – What You Need To Know

The Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Act 2022 (the Act) received Royal Assent on 15 March 2022, just over two weeks after it was introduced into the House of Commons. 

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7. Victim of cryptocurrency fraud granted injunction and worldwide freezing order

A victim of an alleged Bitcoin fraud has been granted a proprietary injunction, worldwide freezing order, a Bankers Trust order and other ancillary orders in order to trace and prevent further dissipation of the stolen assets.

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8. Digital assets not acceptable to court as security for costs 

A Master has rejected a request by a claimant to provide security for costs to the defendants by way of digital assets.

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9. Norwich pharmacal order granted against two bitcoin exchanges

A claimant who fell victim to an alleged cryptocurrency fraud has been granted a Norwich Pharmacal order and a Bankers Trust disclosure order against two Bitcoin exchanges to assist in tracing the missing Bitcoin.

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10. You can look but you can't touch: model imaging order with safeguards added to CPRs

Imaging orders are an effective tool in Business Protection disputes to allow employers to obtain crucial evidence of a former employee's unlawful conduct and recover confidential information.

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The Briefest Case holds several quick updates, highlighting recent useful decisions for those dealing with disputes.


Following the breach of an embargo on publication of a draft judgment provided to the parties, their counsel and solicitors, Sir Geoffrey Vos, MR, has provided guidance to legal representatives. This Court of Appeal guidance clarifies that counsel and solicitors instructed in a case are personally responsible for ensuring compliance with any embargoed draft judgment and could expect to face proceedings for contempt if an embargo is breached.

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Section 1140 CA 2006 permits service on a director of a UK registered company at their ‘registered address’ for any purpose:

  • whether or not the dispute relates to their activities as a director; and
  • up to the end of 14 days following registration of a notice to change address at Companies House

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3. Service of a claim form by an "alternative method" – does reasonableness count?

There is a requirement in the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) that a claimant take "reasonable steps" to ascertain a defendant's address for the purpose of serving the claim form under CPR 6.9(3), when seeking permission to serve by an alternative method under CPR 6.15. The court has commented on what's required.

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4. The dangers of filing the claim form on the last day for service 

In Ideal Shopping Direct Ltd & Ors v Mastercard Incorporated & Ors the Court of Appeal upheld a High Court decision that the claimant had not validly served proceedings by sending an unsealed amended claim form on the final day for service. 

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