Resort threatens again with closure: Court rejects Simpson Bay Resort’s request to freeze April 2-ruling

POSTED: 05/2/12 12:16 PM

St. Maarten – The Common Court of Justice  rejected the Simpson Bay Resort Management company’s request to freeze the April 2-ruling that obliges the company to pay the employees of the former Pelican resort based on their collective labor agreement, to rehire these workers and to pay their union Wifol $50,000. The court issued the ruling on Friday, after having heard arguments from both parties a week earlier. mr. Jairo Bloem, the attorney for the resort, immediately sent a letter to Wifol’s attorneys mrs. Maarten Le Poole and Wim van Sambeek, stating that “further execution by Wifol will most probably result in closure of the resort.”

Royal Resorts Management Company was also a party to the lawsuit, but the court declared this company inadmissible in its request, because the April 2 ruling does not include a sentence against it. Parties will get more clarity about their position in this ongoing dispute when the Common Court hears the appeal against the April 2-ruling on June 27.

Wifol is now able to execute the April 2-ruling immediately.

The resort pleaded with the court that execution the ruling would create an emergency situation. This claim is based on a financial report by versant dated April 5, 2011. The court ignored this report because it does not contain information that was not already known before the April 2 ruling. The court ruled that the resort also failed to present new facts and circumstances during the video conference court hearing on April 20.

The court furthermore ruled that Wifol has a vested interest in executing the April 2-ruling. Considering all relevant arguments, the court ruled that the resort failed to show that its interest in granting its request to freeze the April 2-ruling outweighs Wifol’s interest in rejecting it.

After the ruling, the Simpson Bay Resort maintained that it is unable to abide by the ruling in case the union opts to execute it. “The resort is financially not capable of complying with the verdict of April 2,” mr. Bloem wrote in an email dated Friday April 27.

The resort also holds Wifol “responsible for the monetary equivalent of all damages stemming from the April 2-verdict.”

mr. Bloem stressed in his email that the verdict will not hold up on appeal. “In my view Wifol realizes this, or should realize this. The documents submitted by the Simpson Bay Resort Management Company are clear.”

mr. Bloem added that these documents were not considered by the court of appeals in the limited procedure geared towards freezing the April 2-ruling. “As such, the outcome is not surprising, though it is disappointing because of the obvious ramifications. If Wifol pursues the execution it would be however acting against what ought to be better judgment.”

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