Heaney v Malocca

Judgment Date19 November 1958
Date19 November 1958
CourtSupreme Court
Heaney v. Malocca

Supreme Court.

Practice - Security for costs - Plaintiff resident in Northern Ireland - Plaintiff unable to give security for costs - Action for negligence - Rules of the High Court and Supreme Court, 1926, Or. XII, Rule 1.

The plaintiff, a widow with six children whose only source of income was a sum of £10 per week, which she received from three of her children who were working and living with her, resided in Northern Ireland. She commenced proceedings for damages for injuries suffered by her while using the staircase in defendant's restaurant shop and premises at Dundalk, as a customer.

The defendant brought a motion for security for costs and in the affidavit grounding same it was stated that from a report furnished by an engineer, in respect of the stairway and steps, it was believed that the defendant had a good defence to the action. The plaintiff stated that she would be unable to give security for costs and asked the Court to exercise its discretion in her favour.

Held by the Supreme Court (reversing Murnaghan J.) that the order for security for costs sought should be made.

Per Maguire C.J.:—". . . the position is that prima facie a defendant is entitled to an order for security for costs where the plaintiff resides outside the jurisdiction. In order to deprive him of this right some special circumstance must be shown, e.g., that there is no defence to the action . . . or where there is shown to be ample assets within the jurisdiction. There may be other circumstances which would justify the exercise of the Court's discretion in favour of the plaintiff. Here it is suggested by the defendant, on the report of an engineer, that she has a good defence to the action. In view of this and no other circumstances being shown to justify its being refused the application should have been granted."

Flynn v. Eivers, 86 I. L. T. R. 85 (reported sub nom. Flynn v. Rivers), considered.

Motion on behalf of the defendant for Security for Costs.

The plaintiff, Sarah Heaney, resided at High Street, Newry, in the County of Down, Northern Ireland. On or about the 16th June, 1953, she was in the defendant's restaurant shop and premises, situate at Earl Street, Dundalk, in the County of Louth, as a customer. While descending a stairway in the said premises the plaintiff fell, suffering a fracture of the olecranon with partial dislocation and involvement of the joint, which joint injuries, it was alleged, would be permanent, injuries to her left foot, numerous wounds, bruises, contusions, lacerations, abrasions and nervous shock.

In an action in the High Court she claimed damages for personal injuries suffered and loss and damage sustained by reason, it was alleged, of the negligence and breach of duty of the defendant, her servants or agents, in allowing the stairway to remain in a dangerous state of non-repair. She alleged that the said stairway, a step or steps thereof, were out of repair, unsafe and dangerous and constituted an unusual danger and trap of which the defendant negligently failed to warn the plaintiff.

The defendant moved the Court, by motion on notice, for an order that the plaintiff should furnish security for the defendant's costs. In the affidavit grounding the motion it was stated that from information furnished in respect of the...

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12 cases
  • Salih v The General Accident Fire and Life Assurance Corporation Ltd
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 13 November 1987
    ...of the sets of circumstances which would justify the court in exercising its discretion in favour of the plaintiff. Heaney v. MaloccaIR [1958] I.R. 111 followed. 4. That any right of access to the courts to prosecute civil claims was not an unfettered right, and the right to apply for secur......
  • Harberd v Cross Vetpharm
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 20 May 2003
    ...V DOYLE 1982 ILRM 495 FARES V WILEY 1994 2 IR 379 WALKER V ATKINSON 1895 1 IR 246 DENMAN V O'CALLAGHAN 1897 31 ILTR 141 HEANEY V MALOCCA 1958 IR 111 FLYNN V EIVERS 1951 86 ILTR 85 (REP SUB NOM FLYNN V RIVERS) Abstract: Practice and procedure - Employment law - Litigation - Security for c......
  • Quinn Insurance Ltd (Under Administration) v PricewaterhouseCoopers (A Firm)
    • Ireland
    • Supreme Court
    • 22 March 2021
    ...for security for costs involving individual litigants on the basis that they resided outside the jurisdiction (see, for example, Heaney v. Malocca [1958] I.R. 111, and Collins v. Doyle [1982] I.L.R.M. 495), but the number of applications in this regard has declined substantially because o......
  • Stein v Scallon, Gorrell v Scallon
    • Ireland
    • Court of Appeal (Ireland)
    • 30 November 2018
    ...RBS [2010] IEHC 31, [2011] 2 I.R. 441 which in turn had relied on the earlier jurisprudence including Maguire J. in Heaney v. Malocca [1958] 1 I.R. 111 and the proposition that; ‘Poverty on the part of the plaintiff is not automatically a reason for refusing or granting an order for secur......
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1 books & journal articles
  • The Best Defense is No Offense: Reforming Louisiana's Security for Court Costs Statute
    • United States
    • Louisiana Law Review No. 79-4, July 2019
    • 1 July 2019
    ...153. Id. at 176–77 (footnotes omitted). 154. Id. at 177. 155. See Flynn v. Rivers [1951] 86 ILTR 85 (H. Ct.) (Ir.); Heaney v. Malocca [1958] IR 111 (SC) (Ir.); Jahwar v. Betta Livestock [2001] 4 IR 42 (H. Ct.) (Ir.). 156. Flynn, 86 ILTR 85. 157. Biehler, supra note 13, at 177. 158. Id. 159.......

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