Kona Concept Inc. v. Guimond Boats Limited

In Admiralty Practice, Pleadings on (Updated )

In this matter the Plaintiff commenced proceedings against the Defendant in Hawaii in relation to a contract for the design, manufacture and sale of a tuna fishing boat. The Defendant initially contested the jurisdiction of the Hawaiian courts but after having lost its jurisdiction motion withdrew from that action. The Plaintiff subsequently obtained a default judgment against the Defendant and commenced these proceedings for breach of contract and for enforcement of the U.S. default judgment. The Defendant brought this motion to strike the entire Statement of Claim on the grounds that the Plaintiff was a dissolved company when the Statement of Claim was issued and on the grounds that the Federal Court lacked jurisdiction. On the first issue the Court found that the Defendant had dealt with and was paid by the principal of the Plaintiff and held that fairness dictated that the Plaintiff be permitted to substitute the correct party. On the second issue the Court held that pursuant to s. 22(2)(n) of the Federal Court Act it had jurisdiction over claims for the construction of a ship and that the Plaintiff had pleaded sufficient facts to bring it within that jurisdiction. The Court declined to rule on the claim for the enforcement of the U.S. judgment as its status was in some doubt and this issue was better dealt with in a motion for summary judgment. (Note: The comments of the Court on jurisdiction were approved and adopted in a later motion for summary judgment summarized below under “Miscellaneous”.)