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Castanho v. Brown & Root (U.K.), Ltd.

A.C. 557 (1980)

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Castanho v. Brown & Root (U.K.), Ltd.

United Kingdom House of Lords

A.C. 557 (1980)

Facts

Castanho (plaintiff) was severely injured in an accident while working aboard a ship harbored in England. As a result of the accident, Castanho was paralyzed. The ship was owned by Brown & Root (defendant), which was an English subsidiary of a Texas corporation. Brown & Root also had offices in Texas. Castanho first sued Brown & Root in England and received some compensation as interim payments. Castanho later filed a lawsuit in Texas as well because potential damages were much higher under Texas law, including the availability of punitive damages as well as higher compensatory damages. Castanho requested the English trial court to discontinue the proceedings in England. The trial court denied the request and entered an injunction restraining Castanho from proceeding with the Texas lawsuit. Castanho appealed, and the court of appeal reversed. Brown & Root then appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Lord Scarman, J.)

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