Walkers Named Best BVI Law Firm 2021 by WWL

Walkers is pleased to announce that its BVI office was recently named the Best BVI Law Firm 2021 at the annual Who's Who Legal Awards.

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Walkers Scoops WWL Asset Recovery and Restructuring & Insolvency Awards

Walkers is pleased to announce that its Global Insolvency & Dispute Resolution Group has won two awards at the recent 2021 Who's Who Legal Awards.

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Colette Wilkins QC to Head Walkers Asia Litigation Practice

Walkers is pleased to announce that Cayman Islands partner, Colette Wilkins QC, will be relocating to the firm's Hong Kong office to lead its Asia litigation practice from January 2022.

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Walkers Launches Online AML Training Solution in Bermuda

Walkers Professional Services has announced that it has launched an innovative e-Learning Anti-Money Laundering Training platform in Bermuda.

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Events & Webinars

See upcoming virtual events and webinars.

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Walkers is a leading international law firm. We advise on the laws of Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Ireland and Jersey.
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Diverse & Inclusive

At Walkers we are committed to building a diverse and inclusive workplace where everyone can feel comfortable, happy and confident in an inclusive environment.

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Ireland Update: CBI Dear CEO Letter on MiFID Suitability Requirements

On 1 December 2021 the Central Bank of Ireland ("CBI") issued a Dear CEO Letter detailing the findings of a review undertaken by the CBI as part of a Common Supervisory Action coordinated by the European Securities and Markets Authority ("ESMA") into firms’ compliance with the suitability requirements under MiFID II. The purpose of the Letter is to provide feedback to industry on the findings of the review and to outline the CBI’s expectations in relation to the application of the MiFID II suitability requirements.

To read our advisory, which covers the main findings of the Letter and the actions required by impacted Irish-authorised MiFID firms and credit institutions, please click below.

 

Click to view advisory

 

Ireland Update: Central Bank’s property fund proposals

On 25 November 2021, the Central Bank of Ireland ("CBI") published a consultation paper, CP145, titled "Macroprudential measures for the property fund sector". The Central Bank is consulting on two key proposals: (i) a proposal to introduce leverage limits on certain property funds; and (ii) proposed guidance relating to liquidity mismatches. It is intended that these proposals will apply to alternative investment funds domiciled in Ireland, authorised under domestic legislation and investing over 50% directly or indirectly in Irish property assets. The Central Bank is seeking feedback on the proposals set out in the Consultation Paper by 18 February 2022. 

Read our advisory, which covers a background to the proposals, the CBI's proposed leverage limit, proposed guidance relating to liquidity mismatches and next steps.

 

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Walkers triumphs in Privy Council "Black Swan" Appeal

Convoy Collateral Ltd v Broad Idea and Cho Kwai Chee [2021] UKPC 24

The Privy Council has today handed down its judgment in Convoy Collateral Ltd v Broad Idea International Limited and Cho Kwai Chee, the so-called "Black Swan" Appeal and a related appeal, dismissing both appeals from the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal.

The appeals, which were heard by a seven-member Board in February of this year, concerned two principle issues: (i) the "Service Out" issue: whether the BVI Court has jurisdiction to permit service out of the jurisdiction under r 7.3(2)(b) of the Civil Procedure Rules of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court ("CPR") of an application claiming only freestanding freezing relief; and (ii) the "Power" issue: whether the BVI Court had jurisdiction or power to grant a freezing injunction against Broad Idea, a party within the jurisdiction of the court, to assist enforcement through the court’s process of a prospective (or existing) foreign judgment, the so-called "Black Swan" order named after the original case in which such relief was granted, Black Swan Investment ISA v Harvest View Ltd (BVIHCV 2009/399 (unreported) 23 March 2010).

On the Service Out issue, the appellant, Convoy Collateral Ltd ("Convoy") unsuccessfully sought to persuade the Privy Council to overrule the decision in both Siskina (Owners of cargo lately laden on board) v Distos Cia Naviera SA (“The Siskina”) [1979] AC 210 and Mercedes Benz AG v Leiduck [1996] AC 284 and to hold that the BVI court has power to authorise service on a defendant outside the jurisdiction of a claim form in which a freezing injunction is the only relief sought. Citing the importance of the stare decisis doctrine, the Board confirmed that deviating from the established position of both common law and statute would lead to confusion and uncertainty not only in the BVI, but across all common law jurisdictions over which the Privy Council has authority. The Board accordingly dismissed Convoy's appeal on this point and affirmed the decision of both courts below that Dr Cho could not be brought within the jurisdiction of the BVI court by serving him with a claim form abroad.

With respect to the Power issue, the majority (Lords Leggatt, Briggs, Sales and Hamblen) held that Black Swan was correctly decided and that the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal in the present case was wrong to conclude that it should be overruled. The minority (Sir Geoffrey Vos, Lords Reed and Hodge) considered that the issue did not arise for decision on the appeal since all seven members of the Privy Council agreed that (a) there was, on the facts, no sufficient basis for the conclusion that Broad Idea was merely holding assets to which Dr Cho was beneficially entitled, (b) Broad Idea’s assets were not amenable to any process of execution to satisfy any judgment that might be obtained against Dr Cho in Hong Kong, and (c) that there was therefore no basis for a finding of a risk of dissipation.

Rosalind Nicholson, led by Richard Morgan QC (Maitland Chambers) with Andrew McLeod (One Essex Court), appeared before the Board on behalf of Broad Idea International Limited, supported by Murray Laing, Renell Benjamin and Eleanor Browne.

Ireland Update: Time to Justify Retirement Age

In Ireland, many employers include a mandatory retirement age in their contracts of employment or employee handbooks.  The Employment Equality Acts 1998-2021 prohibit discrimination in employment on a number of grounds, including age.  However, there is an exception that allows employers to impose a mandatory retirement age on employees, provided the retirement age can be objectively justified. Read our advisory, which covers recent case law on mandatory retirement ages, the Code of Practice on Longer Working, the Pensions Commission's recommendations on the State pension age and key takeaways for employers.

 

Click to view advisory

Irish Regulatory Framework for Real Asset Depositaries

Following the issuance of guidance by the Central Bank of Ireland earlier this year, a number of entities have sought authorisation as real asset depositaries. In this advisory we set out the key considerations for entities contemplating making an application for authorisation as a depositary of assets other than financial instruments ("DAoFI").

 

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