BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS
COURT OF APPEAL
APPLICATION TO VARY OR DISCHARGE ORDER OF A SINGLE JUDGE OF THE COURT OF APPEAL – APPLICATION TO FURTHER AMEND NOTICE OF APPEAL REFUSED BY SINGLE JUDGE – PRINCIPLES RELATING TO AMENDMENTS – APPROACH OF APPELLATE COURT TO EXERCISE OF CASE MANAGEMENT DISCRETION OF LOWER COURT JUDGE – POWERS OF THE COURT OF APPEAL – SECTION 32(3) OF THE EASTERN CARIBBEAN SUPREME COURT (DOMINICA) ACT
This is an Appeal against the Order of a single Judge of the Court of Appeal by which a late application to amend a Notice of Appeal was dismissed (without reasons).
In giving Judgment and dismissing the application to vary or set aside the order of a single judge, Baptiste JA held:
- The grant or refusal of an application to amend involves the exercise of the Court’s discretion. In exercising that discretion, the overriding objective, with its emphasis on enabling the court to deal with cases justly, is of the utmost importance, but the just disposal of a case is not reserved only for the party seeking amendment. The Court must consider all parties and has to perform a balancing act as it seeks to strike a fair balance. The factors relevant to doing so depend on the facts of the case and as such cannot be exhaustively listed. However, they are likely to include the history as regards to the amendment and an explanation as to why it is being made late; the prejudice which will be caused to the Applicant if the amendment is refused; the prejudice which will be caused to the opposing party if the amendment is allowed; and whether the text of the amendment is satisfactory in terms of clarity and particularity.