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开曼法院对诉讼费作出厘清 Cayman Court provides clarity on costs (Simplified Chinese)


06 May 2021

Cayman Islands, Hong Kong

1 min read


在2021年3月12日作出的讼费裁决中,法官Ramsay-Hale就开曼群岛大法院在什么情况下可作出以弥偿基准作出讼费裁决厘清其标准细节。 如果按弥偿基准(而不是标准基准)作出裁决,那么胜诉一方可以期望收回更高比例的讼费,因为只有不合理产生或金额不合理的讼费才会在讼费评定时被拒绝计算在内,而且任何关于合理性的怀疑都会以胜诉一方的利益为依归。

在本案中,中植资本(香港)有限公司("ZZHK")成功作出实质申请更正Geopay Holding Limited(“公司”)的股東名冊,以取代Geoswift Holdings Limited (“Geoswift”)成為该公司若干股份的持有人。Geoswift将其在该公司的股份作为抵押,以换取ZZHK向Geoswift提供贷款。在欠缴贷款后,Geoswift阻止ZZHK行使其抵押权益。根据贷款合同的条款,ZZHK亦有权向Geoswift追讨修改股東名冊的讼费。


在达至这个结论的过程中,法官Ramsay Hale 考虑了上诉法院在Weavering Macro Fixed Income Fund Ltdv.Peterson一案中的裁决,在该裁决中,尽管胜诉的各方,即Weavering的董事已根据公司组织章程中的弥偿条款寻求弥偿费用令,但上诉法院依然做出了以标准基础评定讼费的裁决。法官 Ramsay Hale解释了上诉法院的裁决:“如果合同上的弥偿权利不明确,且敗訴一方没有任何不当行为,则应按标准基础评定讼费。[7] 本案与Weavering一案不同的地方是ZZHK应获弥偿的权利是相當明确的,因此法院判给ZZHK的讼费将按弥偿基准评定。

"法官Ramsay Hale对讼费的裁决提供具建設性的指引,说明诉讼败诉方的行为如何影響弥偿费用的裁決。她观察到,虽然弥偿费用裁决一般意味着法院否定了"道德上值得谴责的行为”,但法院同時可命令一方当事人以弥偿基准支付讼费”,即使当事人的行为未達致以上程度,亦不致於有道德上的缺失。”

法官Ramsay Hale引用法官Henderson在Bennett v The Attorney General of the Cayman Islands 一案中的裁决,他区分了”提出仅仅是弱或不太可能成功的抗辩理由”和"维持明显没有希望的抗辩理由”,並确认了”后者可被定性为不合理”。法官Henderson进一步指出,如果裁定一方当事人的申索或对申索的抗辩理由并不合理,通常会导致敗訴一方以弥偿基准支付胜诉一方的费用的命令。

法官Ramsay-Hale的结论是Geoswift已承认欠缴贷款确为,并已提供让ZZHK执行股份扺押所需的文件,因此其没有理据就ZZHK要求更正公司股东名册的申请提出争议,其抗辩理由因此是"完全没有根据” 。因此,Geoswift挑战ZZHK的申请的决定在某程度上是不合理的,故有理由做出以弥偿基准评定讼费的裁决。由于法官Ramsay-Hale认为ZZHK获得弥偿费用的合约权利非常明确,因此行使其酌情权按弥偿基准判定ZZHK的讼费。此结果与法庭公正处理事务的首要目标一致。


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