Alfred McAlpine Capital Projects Ltd v SIAC Construction
Citation: EWHC 3139 (TCC);  BLR 139; 105 Con LR 73
Nature of case:
The court had to consider the operation of the pre-action protocol in circumstances where the defendant sought to join a Part 20 defendant and the claimant sought to join that party as a defendant in the main proceedings. The question was whether a stay should be granted of both main and Part 20 proceedings to allow compliance with the pre-action protocol in relation to the new defendant. The court, rejecting the application for the stay, set out the following relevant considerations for courts in exercising discretion in such cases:
- when was it known that the new party was going to join the action?
- what information about the dispute had been given to that party and when?
- how large a part did the new party play in the action as a whole?
- could a stay be accommodated without jeopardising the overall timetable?
- did justice require a new trial date?
- could the new party be compensated in costs for non-compliance with the protocol?
- was there any alternative to a stay within the existing timetable?
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