Things of interest.

February 23, 2021

Counsel Citing Adverse Authorities

It's rare for counsel to cite adverse authorities.

It’s rare to see counsel citing authorities adverse to them. (Even for the sake of stating/distinguishing why those cases shouldn’t apply.)

The instances where judges point out and thank counsel for their honest use of adverse authorities are even more rare. But much appreciated: it informs you that the counsel who do so are the honourable sort.

See the court in Subramanian v Retnam [1966] 1 MLJ 172:

I would therefore allow the appeal, set aside the learned magistrate’s order of dismissal of the action and substitute for it a judgment in favour of the appellant in the sum of $1,000. The respondent will pay the costs of this appeal and of the action in the court below.

Before concluding the matter I must say that I am deeply grateful to Mr. Morris Edgar for drawing my attention to the case of Ismail bin Savoosah & Ors. v. Hajee Ismail, supra, even though it was against him.


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