Alexander Learmonth QC has been successful in the appeal about removal of an unsuitable litigation friend on the case Shirazi v Susa [2022] EWHC 477 (Ch).

12 May 2022

Alexander Learmonth QC successful in appeal about removal of an unsuitable litigation friend

In March 2022, Chief Master Shuman gave judgment [2022] EWHC 477 (Ch) refusing an application to remove an elderly litigation friend, the wife of the Claimant, despite acknowledging that she was ‘undoubtedly’ under the influence of her son. 

 

On appeal on 11 May 2022, expedited due to the proximity of trial, Alexander Learmonth QC succeeded in persuading Bacon J that the Chief Master’s decision was flawed.  Litigation friends need to be able to exercise objectivity and independence, she held.  In circumstances where the litigation friend was financially, domestically and emotionally interdependent on her son, whose financial dealings were ‘opaque’ and had and interest in the outcome of the litigation, she was not able fairly and competently to represent her husband in a claim to set aside transactions in favour of her other son’s company.

 

Bacon J’s judgment was extempore, but a transcript should be available in due course.

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Alexander Learmonth QC