Talbot v Hibernian Group Plc and Another

JudgeMs. Justice Irvine
Judgment Date14 November 2007
Neutral Citation[2007] IEHC 385
CourtHigh Court
Date14 November 2007
Docket Number[No. 433P/2007]

[2007] IEHC 385


[No. 433P/2007]
Talbot v Hibernian Group Plc & Amicus the Union





RSC O.19

RSC O.19 r27

RSC O.19 r28


FAY v TEGRAL PIPES LTD & ORS 2005 2 IR 261 2005/25/5119 2005 IESC 34



FLANAGAN v KELLY UNREP O'SULLIVAN 26.2.1999 1999/11/2871

Ms. Justice Irvine

The plaintiff in these proceedings first took up employment with Hibernian Group PLC in 20th October, 1956. The plaintiff appears to have retired from his employment as a claim's handler in November of 2001.


In 2006, under Record No. 1726P the plaintiff instituted proceedings against Hibernian Group PLC and Amicus the Union seeking to ventilate various claims against the defendants arising from his employment over the aforementioned period. In those proceedings the plaintiff's main complaints related to the nature and ever expanding volume of work which he was required to carry out in the course of his employment. The plaintiff also complained extensively regarding the level of remuneration furnished to him in respect of his employment which he contended had significant effects upon him throughout the latter years of his employment and as of the date of his retirement in terms of both lump sum and pension entitlements.


The aforementioned proceedings bearing Record No. 2006 1726P also included a multitude of complaints referable to decisions of the Legal Aid Board, the Employment Appeals Tribunal, Rights Commissioners and the Labour Court. In July 2006, a new Indorsement of Claim directed to the complaints against Amicus was delivered and in that document Mr. Talbot alleged that an employee of Amicus namely one Jerry Shanahan abandoned his obligations to take care of his interests both in respect of his position and salary entitlements. He stated that he had been a member of Amicus for 50 years and that collusion between his union and his employer over a number of years and in particular 1999 contributed to the position he found himself in as of the date of his retirement.


The defendants in the aforementioned proceedings brought applications to the court to have those proceedings under Record No. 2006 1726P dismissed under the Provisions of O. 19 of the Rules of the Superior Courts and also under the Courts inherent jurisdiction. By order of Ms. Justice Dunne dated 11th January, 2007, the trial judge dismissed all claims, according to Mr. Talbot, not on the basis that the proceedings were vexatious or an abuse of process but rather by reason of the failure on the part of Mr. Talbot to disclose any reasonable cause of action.


Immediately following upon the order of Ms. Justice Dunne Mr. Talbot issued the within proceedings against the same defendants who had been the subject matter of the earlier litigation. A plenary summons was issued on 22nd January, 2007 and this document sets out the statement of the plaintiff's cause and the nature of his claim. Separate documents were delivered in respect of the claim against Hibernian Group and the claim against Amicus.


An appearance on behalf of the second named defendant was entered to the proceedings on 24th January, 2007 and a motion was issued on 22nd February, 2007 by the second named defendant seeking to dismiss the within action.


There are two notices of motion before the court which form the subject matter of this judgment and they are:


a) The second named defendant's motion to dismiss the plaintiff's claim pursuant to O. 19 Rules 27 and 28 and also pursuant to the court's inherent jurisdiction and


b) A motion issued by the plaintiff seeking judgment in default of defence dated 20th February, 2007 but filed on 27th March, 2007


It appears to be the case that the defendants each treated the statement of cause and nature of the claim set out in the plenary summons of 22nd January, 2007 as the de facto statement of claim and both defendants have subsequently delivered a defence to the same. The first named defendant delivered its defence on 3rd April, 2007 and the second named defendant delivered its defence on 4th May, 2007.


In advance of the issue by the second named defendants of its motion to dismiss the plaintiff's claim Ms. Aileen Fleming, a solicitor in the firm of Daniel Spring Solicitors wrote to the plaintiff on 29th January, 2007 complaining that the plenary summons comprised 25 complaints but did not adequately state how the same gave rise to any cause of action against Amicus. Further, Ms. Fleming advised that in the circumstances particulars would have to be delivered.


The plaintiff brought a motion for judgment in default of defence and this was heard before Mr. Justice Herbert on 30th April, 2007 on which date he directed the defendants to deliver their defences within two weeks. As already stated the defences were delivered on 3rd April, 2007 and 4th May, 2007. The solicitors acting on behalf of the second named defendant further raised particulars seeking to obtain further details of the plaintiff's claim. This notice for particulars has not been replied to by the plaintiff.


Insofar as the within proceedings are concerned the court has the benefit of the initial "statement of cause and nature of claim" delivered against both defendants on 22nd January, 2007. Further, the court has been referred to a statement of claim which was apparently filed in the Central Office on 31st October, 2007 despite the fact that the defendants each treated the plenary summons as the document setting out the plaintiff's cause of action against each of them. Notwithstanding the fact that the second named defendants motion issued in response to the plenary summons setting out the nature of Mr. Talbot's claim on 22nd January, 2007 the parties are agreed that I should have regard to this more fulsome statement of claim for the purposes of dealing with the second named defendant's application.


The court notes with significant regret that it appears likely that Mr. Talbot because of his ongoing dispute with the defendants in this action has received no pension payments from the first named defendant since his retirement in November, 2001 and that he has been effectively surviving upon the State old age pension for a number of...

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2 cases
  • Talbot v Hibernian Group Plc and Another
    • Ireland
    • Supreme Court
    • 26 March 2009
  • Talbot v McCann Fitzgerald Solicitors and Others
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 8 October 2010
    ...Isaac Wunder order would be granted. Reporter: R.F. TALBOT v HIBERNIAN GROUP PLC & AMICUS THE UNION UNREP IRVINE 14.11.2007 2007/58/12467 2007 IEHC 385 TALBOT v HIBERNIAN GROUP PLC & AMICUS THE UNION UNREP SUPREME 26.3.2009 2009/54/13803 2009 IESC 27 TALBOT v MCCANN FITZGERALD SOLICITORS & ......

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