Supreme Court of Cocos (Keeling) Island - Notable Cases

Notable Cases

In Clunies-Ross v Totterdell, Justice French of the Federal Court of Australia held that the Bankruptcy Ordinance 1888 of the former Colony of Singapore continued to apply to the Island. As a consequence, the court could assist Singaporean courts in bankruptcy proceedings as the court still had a bankruptcy jurisdiction based on that old law. French also held that the Bankruptcy Act 1914 (UK) continued to apply to the court. As a result, bankruptcy on the Island could be dealt with under that English law. It was accepted that Australian bankruptcy laws did not apply to the Island and a letter of request was necessary to be issued for Australian laws to apply.

In giving his judgment on the then state of the law, French said that the laws of the territory can be regarded as “regulated by a system of law which is Byzantine in its complexity”.

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