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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Another Specialty Business Court, in the UK, for Financial Industry Disputes Over £50m

Specialty courts provide a favored group of litigants with access to special judicial processes and jurists. Some say the courts are part of a race to the bottom, and are often offered by tiny jurisdictions that rank low in other options for producing economic value. Apparantly further proving the thesis, the UK’s High Court now has a new specialty court for financial industry litigation, as announced last summer and recently explained in a November 9, 2015 LAW360 article. The latter explains:

“Only three kinds of actions can be commenced in the Financial List:

claims that principally relate to loans, project finance, banking transactions, derivatives and complex financial products, financial benchmark, capital or currency controls, bank guarantees, bonds, debt securities, private equity deals, hedge fund disputes, sovereign debt, or clearing and settlement, and are for more than £50 million or its foreign currency equivalent; claims that require particular expertise in the “financial markets”; and claims that raise issues of general importance to the “financial markets.”

For these purposes “financial markets” include the fixed income markets (covering repos, bonds, credit derivatives, debt securities and commercial paper generally), the equity, derivatives, loan, foreign currency, and commodities markets.

Actions can only be commenced in the Financial List if they fall within one of the three kinds set out above. Cases commenced in other divisions of the High Court “which fall within the spirit but not the letter” of the cases set out above can, however, be transferred into the Financial List through the exercise of the court’s case management powers.”

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