Case Alert - [2018] EWHC 156 (Comm)

Court considers scope of a "stakeholder claim" in CPR r86

Clyde & Co (Edward Mills-Webb and Dolly Brown) acted for the claimants.

CPR r86 provides that "where a person is under a liability in respect of a debt or in respect of any money, goods or chattels and competing claims are made or expected to made against that person in respect of that debt or money or for those goods or chattels by two or more persons", that person (a so-called "stakeholder") may apply to court for a direction as to whom he/she should pay a debt or money or given any goods or chattels.

Of issue in this case was what was meant by "competing claims" in this rule. Teare J concluded that, although many references to a "claim" in the CPR must mean proceedings before the English courts, the context of the relevant rule may require a different definition. That was the case here: it did not matter if the competing claims were claims which will be made in arbitration or in proceedings brought outside of England. An earlier decision in H Stevenson & Son v Brownell [1912] was distinguished on its facts (there, one of the parties was already a judgment creditor).