Timothy Salisbury's appeal successful in the Queen’s Bench Division

Timothy Salisbury has been successful in the Queen’s Bench Division in an appeal from the County Court at Central London regarding relevant dates for compliance with court orders. 

The appeal concerned the interpretation of an order by a circuit judge in the County Court at Central London, made on 5 April 2016 and drawn by the court on 7 April 2016, requiring that documents in an appeal were to be filed “no later than 6 weeks after the receiving this order”.  The Appellant’s solicitors received the order on 14 April 2016 and filed the required documents within 6 weeks of that date, however they were misfiled by the court and the appeal was struck out for a failure by the Appellant to file the documents or seek an extension of time to comply. 

The Appellant sought to set aside the strike out on the basis that they had complied with the original order, however the Recorder upheld the strike out seemingly on the basis that the order would have been deemed served on 11 April, and thus the Appellant had not lodged the documents in time. 

On appeal to the High Court,  Mr Justice Jay held that as there was no way of knowing the date of posting of the order (and therefore the date of deemed service) the date of service was not relevant and accepted the submissions on behalf of the Appellant that the date of receipt by the Appellant’s solicitors had to be the relevant date and therefore original order below had been complied with by the Appellant.  Mr Justice Jay also noted that orders should not be made in such terms and that it was much better for judges to specify the date and time for compliance.