UK: Successfully Obtaining An Anti-Suit Injunction: Practice Points (A v B, July 2019)

Last Updated: 8 August 2019
Article by Sohail Ali and Victor Croci

On 19 July 2019, DLA Piper successfully obtained a final anti-suit injunction order in the High Court before His Honourable Mr Justice Jacobs.

The case raised a number of complex jurisdictional issues in circumstances where the defendant had already issued and serve proceedings in Israel, in breach of an exclusive jurisdiction clause contained in two separate contractual documents. The High Court emphatically rejected the defendant's arguments and reinforced the message that the English courts will uphold the principles of anti-suit relief subject to the usual tests being satisfied.

This judgment will be of particular interest to practitioners and clients alike who undertake cross-border work. In particular, the judgment raises important practical issues for practitioners and clients to be aware of when seeking anti-suit relief, particularly relating to the speed at which such relief is sought and the approach that an applicant should take in relation to proceedings commenced in breach of a jurisdiction clause.


  • The parties had entered into a series of settlement agreements in July 2014 relating to the waiver of all claims regarding an aborted property venture in the Russian Federation.
  • Settlement agreements No. 1 and 2 provided for any dispute to be resolved by arbitration under the LCIA Rules (with the seat in London) whereas settlement agreement No. 3 was subject to the jurisdiction of the Israeli courts. Complexities arose due to the fact that the contracts were inter-connected.
  • The defendants (respondents) commenced court proceedings in Israel in October 2018 alleging fraudulent misrepresentation against the parties to all three settlement agreements. The proceedings were served on the claimants (applicants) on 6 March 2019.
  • The claimants made an ex-parte application for an anti-suit injunction at the High Court in London on 21 March 2019 seeking to prevent the defendants from proceeding with litigation in Israel. An interim order was granted by Mrs Justice Cockerill on 22 March 2019 pending the return date hearing.
  • The claimants commenced LCIA proceedings in May 2019 alleging that the defendants had breached the terms of settlement agreement No. 1 by virtue of commencing the Israeli proceedings.


At the return date hearing on 19 July 2019, Jacobs J ordered the anti-suit injunction order of Cockerill J to be continued. Jacob J held:

  • No material delay - The claimants had not delayed in applying for anti-suit relief and had done so promptly before the Israeli proceedings were too far advanced.

    Jacobs J held that whilst the claimants had been aware of the overseas proceedings since October 2018 they were entitled to wait until they were actually served with such proceedings in March 2019. Importantly, Jacobs J held that the Israeli proceedings were still at a preliminary stage when the claimants sought anti-suit relief and had not progressed significantly by the return date hearing.
  • Jurisdiction of the Israeli court - Jacobs J reaffirmed that it is the duty of an English court (as court of the seat of the arbitration) to uphold the principles of anti-suit relief in the context of a clear and present arbitration agreement. This duty applies irrespective of whether an overseas court is in the process of determining jurisdiction.

    Importantly, Jacobs J distinguished a key authority (2009) on competing fora as not applicable in the context of a court attempting to seize jurisdiction in breach of a clear and exclusive arbitration agreement.
  • Risk of multiplicity of proceedings - Jacobs J noted the potential risks of multiplicity of proceedings and, in particular, the risk of inconsistent decisions arising out of the LCIA proceedings and Israeli proceedings. However, he held that such risk was minimal and not a strong reason to refuse anti-suit relief.

    Jacobs J placed particular emphasis first on the fact that the claimants had already commenced the LCIA proceedings and that therefore there would be a minimum of two sets of proceedings in any event. Furthermore, Jacobs J relied on Skype v Joltid [2009] as authority for stating that multiplicity of proceedings was simply the natural consequence of the parties' contractual agreement (i.e., settlement agreements No. 1 and 2 contained LCIA jurisdiction provisions whereas settlement agreement No. 3 was subject to the Israeli courts) and therefore not "a strong reason" for refusing anti-suit relief.

Practical points

The decision raises important practical considerations when advising on and/or seeking anti-suit relief:

  1. Delay - Ensure that anti-suit relief is sought promptly. The court held that an applicant was entitled to wait until it was actually served with proceedings but then must act without further delay. In this case, the court held that the applicant had acted promptly after being served in making its application for relief. Care should also be taken that an applicant does not participate, and is not perceived to participate actively in the foreign proceedings (which could suggest that it has accepted jurisdiction of the foreign court). Given that often a party will need to file a defence to prevent default judgment being obtained against it, it will be imperative to act swiftly in seeking anti-suit relief. Acting slowly or actively partaking in overseas proceedings could be fatal to a party's prospects of subsequently obtaining an anti-suit injunction.
  2. Jurisdiction of the overseas court - If a contract contains a clear and express jurisdictional provision in favour of an arbitral body, then the fact that an overseas court is in the process of determining whether it may determine the dispute is irrelevant for the purpose of determining anti-suit relief. In such circumstances, an English court remains bound to determine the applicant's request for relief pursuant to the usual tests.
  3. Multiplicity of proceedings - If court proceedings are commenced in breach of an express arbitration provision, an applicant should commence arbitration proceedings without delay. Proceeding in this manner (a) renders the multiplicity argument redundant should the respondent seek to rely on it before anti-suit proceedings (as multiple proceedings are afoot in any event); and also (b) tactically increases pressure on the respondent by forcing them to litigate on two separate fronts.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Topics
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions