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Freezer Pack

13 June 2019

It was in 1975 in Mareva Compania Naviera SA v International Bulkcarriers SA where HFW acted for the successful applicant in securing an injunction restraining the respondents from removing or disposing of any moneys out of the jurisdiction1.

The “Mareva injunction” or freezing order as it is now commonly known in England, has since developed and become an important tool available to those who wish to prevent a party from disposing of or dealing with its assets, usually until a judgment can be obtained or enforced.

This Pack looks at English freezing orders in more detail, initially looking at the basic principles in securing such an order as an applicant and responding to an order as a respondent. We then go on to look at the potential implications of breaching the terms of the order, which usually result in severe consequences.

After looking at some of the basic principles involved, we examine how a freezing order can be utilised in relation to fraudulent activity, after which we consider using freezing orders to freeze third party assets, by reference to the latest authorities2.

We then touch upon alternative asset preservation and disclosure orders as well as considering how freezing orders can be utilised against “persons unknown”, especially in the context of a cyber-attack.

Finally, we provide a spotlight on some key jurisdictions, looking at the routes available to “freeze” assets in those jurisdictions, in order to give you some useful insights.


  1. HFW were at the vanguard of the development of both the domestic English freezing order (The Mareva [1980] 1 All ER 213) and the worldwide freezing order (Babanaft International Co SA v Bassatne [1990] Ch 13).
  2. Please also refer to our Enforcement Pack, 2nd edition (September 2018) which looks in more detail at how injunctions can be used to aid enforcement of judgments and awards.
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