Aia International Ltd Formerly Known As American International Assurance Company (Bermuda) Ltd v Fong Lok Yee Formerly Known As Fong Kit Yee

CourtDistrict Court (Hong Kong)
Judgement NumberDCCJ4183/2013
Subject MatterCivil Action
DCCJ4183/2013 AIA INTERNATIONAL LTD formerly known as AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL ASSURANCE COMPANY (BERMUDA) LTD v. FONG LOK YEE formerly known as FONG KIT YEE

DCCJ 4183/2013

IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

CIVIL ACTION NO 4183 OF 2013

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BETWEEN

AIA INTERNATIONAL LIMITED Plaintiff
formerly known as AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL ASSURANCE COMPANY (BERMUDA) LIMITED

and

FONG LOK YEE formerly known
as FONG KIT YEE
Defendant

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Before : Deputy District Judge Phillis Loh in Chambers (open to public)
Date of Hearing : 17 June 2014
Date of Reasons for Decision : 19 June 2014

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REASONS FOR DECISION

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1. This is the defendant’s appeal under Order 58 of the Rules of the District Court (“RDC”) against the Master’s decision dated 7 April 2014 dismissing her application to set aside a default judgment against her with costs.

Background

2. The defendant was an insurance agent working for the plaintiff. The plaintiff’s claim is that the defendant had wrongfully retained sums of money received by her between 7 December 2006 and 5 January 2010 from an insured Kings View Airconditioning Engineering Company Limited (“Kings View”) who placed orders for or renewed insurance policies. Of the total sum of $598,364 received by the defendant, she only deposited a sum of $146,382 into Kings View’s insurance accounts with the plaintiff, having retained a balance of $451,982 (Statement of Claim; para 3). As a result the plaintiff was obliged to make refund to Kings View. The plaintiff sues in this action for a sum of $305,176.16 which it says the defendant was liable to repay or account to the plaintiff.

4. The writ of summons together with the Statement of Claim was issued on 29 October 2013.

5. The plaintiff obtained a default judgment for the sum claimed plus interest against the defendant on 13 January 2013.

6. By summons dated 21 January 2014, the defendant applies to set aside the default judgment.

7. Her application was dismissed with costs by the Master on 7 April 2014.

8. The defendant applied for Legal Aid on 4 November 2013 in respect of the present proceedings. She explains in her 2nd Affidavit her misunderstanding that upon receipt of the writ of summons, she had thought the Director of Legal Aid would deal with or take over the defence on her behalf. She was mistaken as Legal Aid was never granted; her application for Legal Aid was refused on 17 February 2014, and before that default judgment was entered on 13 January 2014. She did not even file an Acknowledgement of Service so no notice of intention to enter default...

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