HomeCase studiesSMEs, directors & shareholdersCommercial litigationOpposing an appeal in the Qatar Financial Centre Civil and Commercial Court

Why the client needed our help

Our clients were the three defendants in a claim brought in the Qatar Financial Centre Civil and Commercial Court. Our clients were former shareholders of a financial services company incorporated in the QFC (the Company). The claimant, a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands, purchased our clients’ shareholding in the Company and become the Company’s sole shareholder.

The claimant alleged that our clients’ had breached a number of warranties that they had provided in the share purchase agreement (the SPA). At trial, the court held that our clients had breached the warranties provided in the SPA, but any losses suffered by the claimant as a result of the breach were, at most, nominal. For this reason the court declined to make a costs order.

The claimant appealed the decision of the court, and argued that the court should have ordered our clients to pay the claimant’s legal costs. Our clients approached us for advice as to whether they could oppose the claimant’s appeal.

How we helped

Upon being instructed, we advised our client that the claimant was not entitled to appeal at this stage, and would first require permission to appeal from the court. We reviewed the claimant’s permission to appeal application and advised our clients that the application could be opposed. We prepared written submissions in response to each of the claimant’s grounds of appeal, and highlighted that the first instance judges in the QFC courts have very wide discretion when making costs orders.

We ensured that our clients’ opposition to the claimant’s permission to appeal application was filed promptly, and in accordance with the court’s procedural rules.

The Outcome

We successfully had the appeal dismissed meaning that the claim against our client was no longer possible – a great result for our client.

We instructed Francis Wilks & Jones to take over a very complex trade finance and invoice discounting fraud which had been perpetrated against us and which had been commenced by a large City law firm with whom we had grown dissatisfied.  The case involved a claim of over $20 million and the two defendants in the claim had gone to great lengths to cover up the fraud and hide the misappropriated funds. The claim involved multiple jurisdictions including Dubai and Pakistan

We were delighted by the work undertaken by FWJ together with their team of third party professionals, including their barrister and forensic investigators.  Their team approach lead to a worldwide freezing order and ultimately resulted in successfully obtaining judgment of $35 million which we are currently seeking to enforce against the two Defendants and others who benefitted from the fraud.

We could not rate FWJ highly enough for their teamwork, dedication and legal and forensic expertise. We would highly recommend them for this type of work.

The managing director of a worldwide group of companies

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