This article considers the tension between the Privy Council decision in Cambridge Gas and the Supreme Court decision in Rubin both concerning the limits of the common law jurisdiction to assist foreign courts in insolvency proceedings.
The Isle of Man courts are internationalist in outlook. This is inevitable given the global nature of commercial activity that operates in and through the Island and the movement of individuals to and from the Island. The Isle of Man courts endeavour to assist the courts of foreign friendly nations provided the Isle of Man court has jurisdiction to do so. This article concerns assistance in relation to foreign corporate insolvency proceedings and considers the limits of that assistance in the light of the Cambridge Gas and Rubin cases. In the former the Privy Council (as the final Manx appeal court) appeared to widen the scope for such assistance; however, the Supreme Court in Rubin disagreed. The Isle of Man courts will need to decide in future cases whether to continue on the wide path mapped by the Privy Council, or narrow the effect of that decision and follow the Supreme Court.
The Isle of Man courts have a statutory jurisdiction to assist courts having bankruptcy jurisdiction in certain countries, however, this only applies to personal (not corporate) insolvencies. In re Impex Services Worldwide Limited the Isle of Man High Court decided that at common law the court should recognise the appointment by foreign courts of insolvency officers in corporate insolvencies, that with such recognition comes a wide and discretionary common law jurisdiction to assist other courts in relation to insolvency matters, though in exercising such discretion the Isle of Man court would, in particular, have regard to the rules of private international law.
Download the full article here: Is insolvency different?