Jersey Channel Islands - Attachment of Assets
Gillian Robinson, Advocate of the Royal Court of Jersey
Kai McGriele, Appleby Hunter Bailhache
Originally from Attachment of Assets
1. What is the general nature and effect of judicial measures available for plaintiffs to obtain provisional relief affecting property of debtors to obtain security for judgments to be obtained (“attachments”)? Freezing property in place? Placing it in the custody of a third party, such as a court official, sheriff or marshal?
In general terms the nature of these judicial measures in Jersey is the freezing of the property of debtors (or indeed of the persons of debtors – see question 2 and 8) either in place or in the custody of a third party. The effect of this is a preservation of ‘…the status quo pending the ascertainment by the court of the rights of the parties and the grant to the plaintiff of the relief to which his cause of action entitles him, which may or may not include a final injunction.’ (Siskina v Distos Cia Naviera SA, cited in Abbott Industries Incorporated v Warner & Ors. [1985-86] JLR 375).
2. What is the form of attachment? Injunction? Other kind of judicial order? Specify.
There are three main remedies used to obtain provisional relief in this way in Jersey. These are as follows and will be described separately:
Interlocutory Injunctions – in the case of Walters v Bingham [1985-86] JLR 439 it was noted that, with regard to injunctions generally, it was indisputable that the Royal Court of Jersey at common law has identical powers and inherent jurisdiction to those of the English High Court. The English High Court has inherent jurisdiction to grant an injunction where it is just and convenient to do so and any order may be unconditional or subject to such conditions as the court thinks just.
An injunction which freezes a defendant’s assets prior to judgment is available in Jersey. It is known as a ‘Mareva’ type injunction or freezing order and will no doubt have been covered in detail in the English section. These have been embraced by the Royal Court of Jersey after the Deputy Bailiff, in Walters, drew comparisons between Mareva injunction and the ancient form of injunction known to Jersey as the 'saisie conservatoire'. The said Deputy Bailiff referred to the case of Allix v Allix  210 Ex 230 to illustrate as follows: