The case of the day is V.L. v. E.L. (S. Ct. 2016). Longtime readers know that I have an interest in the Full Faith and Credit Clause. Today’s case is purely domestic and not a close call, but still interesting.
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The case of the day is Alberta Securities Commission v. Ryckman (Del. Super. Ct. 2015). In 1996, the Alberta Securities Commission, following a hearing, found that Lawrence G. Ryckman, the chairman and director of Westgroup, had violated Alberta securities laws by participating in a “complex scheme that created a false and misleading appearance of trading designed to deceive investors to trade at artificial prices.” The administrative decision imposed nearly $500,000 in costs. The Commission obtained a judgment in Canada against Ryckman on the basis of the administrative decision.
Ryckman moved from Canada to Arizona in 1997. The Commission obtained an Arizona judgment against Ryckman in an action in an Arizona Superior Court, which was affirmed on appeal. It then sought to enforce the Arizona judgment in Delaware under the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act, the law in force in most states under which states grant full faith and credit to sister-state judgments. It was undisputed that the Commission would not have been able to obtain recognition of the Alberta judgment directly in Delaware, for two reasons. First, the statute of limitations under Delaware law had expired; and second, Delaware law (the UFCMJRA) does not provide for recognition and enforcement of foreign money judgments to the extent the judgment is for a fine or other penalty.
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The case of the day is Flame S.A. v. Industrial Carriers, Inc. (E.D. Va. 2014). This is the same case I wrote about on August 8, 2014. In the prior post, the issue was recognition of an English judgment Flame, a Swiss shipping and trading company, had obtained against Industrial Carriers for breach of a forward freight contract. In today’s post, the issue was whether another of the plaintiffs, Glory Wealth Shipping PTE Ltd., was entitled to maintain a maritime attachment of the M/V Cape Viewer on account of a default judgment from the Southern District of New York recognizing an English arbitral award Glory Wealth had obtained against Industrial Carriers. But the challenge to the attachment was not brought by Industrial Carriers, but by Freight Bulk PTE Ltd., which was not a party to the New York case and, it appears, not even a party to the underlying arbitration.
Continue reading Case of the Day: Flame S.A. v. Industrial Carriers, Inc.