Change of venue not an option rules Court of Appeal

Posted: 20th September 2011

It is not uncommon for a dispute to be capable of settlement in more than one way. What isn’t normally possible is for an attempt to be made to settle the same dispute in two different ways.
Law Court
When a couple claimed a right of way over their neighbours’ back garden, he unsurprisingly challenged the move and the dispute was referred to the Chief Land Registrar to be determined.
Having set the wheels in motion, the couple then found that they were having difficulty obtaining the evidence necessary to back up their claim. So they withdrew their case on the day of the hearing and sought instead to pursue the same claim through the courts.
The dispute ended up in the Court of Appeal, which ruled that the adjudicator had the right to allow a case to be withdrawn early in the proceedings (although the costs of the other party will normally have to be met by the party withdrawing). However, there is no right to require the adjudicator to allow the case to be withdrawn.
It is important to make your case on the basis of assembling the evidence, weighing the best way forward and proceeding along the chosen path. Acting in hast almost always means repenting at leisure!