Federal Republic of Nigeria V JP Morgan
The High Court has recently handed down the much awaited judgment in the case of Federal Republic of Nigeria (“FRN”) v JP Morgan1 . Having lain dormant for a number of years following the seminal decision in Barclays v Quincecare2 , there has been a renaissance of these claims, starting with the Singularis decision in 2017.
More recently the duty has undergone a period of clarification, expansion and then refinement. The recent decision from the Court of Appeal in Philipp v Barclays3 has confirmed that the duty can apply to individuals dealing with their own funds, although the facts of that case remain to be tested at trial. Previously, it had been understood (owing perhaps largely to how the cases had been interpreted) that the duty could only apply to corporate clients acting by their agents. Further the duty was confirmed, by the Privy Council in RBS v JP SPC4 to only be applicable to a bank’s client and not to third parties, including those with a beneficial interest in funds fraudulently paid away.
This article was first published in TL4 Disputes Magazine – Issue 10, September 2022.
1 The Federal Republic of Nigeria v JP Morgan Chase NA  EWHC 1788 (Comm)
2 Barclays Bank v Quincecare  4 All ER 363
3 Fiona Lorraine Philipp v Barclays Bank UK PLC  EWCA Civ 318
4 Royal Bank of Scotland International Ltd v JP SPC 4 and Anor  UKPC 18
Authored by Kit Smith, Associate.