News

F1 personality ordered to pay part 36 indemnity costs over failure to engage in settlement

Eddie Jordan

The High Court has ordered well-known Formula 1 personality Eddie Jordan to pay indemnity costs after he accepted a “very historic” £15,000 part 36 offer that was still open on the eve of trial – and which was £85,000 less than he had been offered a year earlier. Mr Justice Mann said he was penalising Mr Jordan’s “culpable failure to engage in negotiations”.

August 10th, 2017

Reducing hourly rates for incurred costs is “good reason” to do the same to budgeted costs

Colin Campbell

A deputy master who reduced hourly rates for incurred costs on detailed assessment ruled last week that he had “good reason” to do the same for the budgeted costs. He said it made “no sense” for the budgeted rates to be left untouched if they are not scrutinised at the CCMC.

August 9th, 2017

Appeal judges reject law firm’s claim for fees under insolvency CFA

rcj 3

The Court of Appeal has rejected a law firm’s claim to its legal fees in a battle with a liquidator over an conditional fee agreement. Lord Justice Hamblen said there was a “shared common understanding” that its fees would be paid from recoveries and the liquidator would not be personally liable for any shortfall.

August 8th, 2017

Court of Appeal: claimants cannot “blow hot and cold” with QOCS

RCJ portrait

Claimants cannot “blow hot and cold” with Qualified One-Way Costs Shifting by terminating one conditional fee agreement and signing a new one just to get the benefit of costs protection, the Court of Appeal has ruled.

August 3rd, 2017

Supreme Court overturns dismissal of appeal because of failure to pay judgment sum into court

Supreme Court sign

A Court of Appeal judge was wrong to end an appeal because the appellant company had not complied with a condition to pay the judgment sum into court first and he thought its wealthy owner could have paid instead, the Supreme Court has ruled.

August 2nd, 2017

Burford ramps up portfolio finance activity with first UK firm deal

Guy Harvey

Burford Capital has agreed a “multi-million pound” portfolio financing agreement with Shepherd & Wedderburn, which it said is the first of its kind to be offered by a top 100 UK law firm and major funder. The deal provides flexible capital that Shepherd & Wedderburn can use “to expand its ability to offer alternative fee arrangements to clients and grow the firm’s reach in commercial litigation and arbitration”.

August 2nd, 2017

Claimant lawyers turn guns on insurers over repair costs “rip off”

Andrew Twambley new

Claimant lawyers have leapt on a newspaper report that accused insurers of “routinely inflating repair costs” by as much as 100%, while receiving “undisclosed kickbacks” for the difference. Lobbying group Access to Justice said the Association of British Insurers had shown “breathtaking hypocrisy” in failing to condemn the practice while continuing to argue for whiplash reform.

August 2nd, 2017

Guarded welcome for Jackson’s fixed-cost plans

David Lidington

Lawyers have responded positively to Lord Justice Jackson’s report on fixed costs, while expressing relief that he had modified his initial idea of imposing a grid on all cases worth up to £250,000. However, concerns remain about how the plans will operate.

August 1st, 2017

Jackson lays out vision of fixed costs for some cases up to £250,000

Lord Justice Jackson

Lord Justice Jackson has today put forward his vision for extending fixed recoverable costs (FRC), but said he has not gone as far as originally envisaged because of improvements made in costs management. He proposed “finishing the job” of introducing FRC for all fast-track cases, as well as a new ‘intermediate’ track for certain claims up to £100,000, and a voluntary pilot of a ‘capped costs’ regime for business and property cases up to £250,000.

July 31st, 2017

Litigators evenly split on impact of Brexit

City of London

Litigation lawyers in London are fairly evenly split on whether Brexit will lead to a “significant flight of work” to other jurisdictions, a survey has found. The survey underlined the strength of opposition from commercial lawyers to fixed costs. Lord Justice Jackson is to publish his report on the issue this morning.

July 31st, 2017

Burford posts “best ever” interim results

Chris Bogart new

Litigation funder Burford Capital has announced its strongest ever results, with profits for the first half of 2017 greater than the whole of 2016, driven by rising client demand. Highlights from the financial results for the year ended 30 June 2017 included an increase in income by 130% to $175.5m (£133.5m), and operating profit up by 151% to $155m.

July 27th, 2017

Arguments over judicial bias should not be based on “feelings of client”, says incoming LCJ

Lord Justice Burnett

Arguments over “apparent bias” in judges should be based on the view of a “fair-minded and informed observer” and not the feelings of clients, Lord Justice Burnett has said. Burnett LJ, who takes over as Lord Chief Justice in October, told the Court of Appeal: “The party who seeks to bounce a judge from a case may be fair-minded and informed but may very well lack objectivity.”

July 27th, 2017

Discount rate should be not be more than 1%, insurers say

the road of money

Most insurers believe the personal injury discount rate should not be increased above 1%, according to a poll by City firm BLM. Partner Antony French told a webinar hosted by the firm, which specialises in insurance work, that damages awards of over £10m had become “common”.

July 26th, 2017

Employment tribunal fees order is unlawful, Supreme Court rules

Baroness Hale

The order introduced in 2013 imposing employment tribunal fees is unlawful and breaches both common law and EU rights of access to justice, the Supreme Court has ruled. The unanimous ruling this morning means that the government will have to refund fees paid by claimants.

July 26th, 2017

Court of Appeal overturns ruling in favour of claimant that accepted part 36 offer late

Louise Shaw

Uncertainty regarding a claimant’s prognosis is part of the usual risk of personal injury litigation and not enough to justify disapplying the usual consequences of accepting a part 36 offer out of time, the Court of Appeal has ruled.

July 26th, 2017

Blog

Third-party funders – access to justice warriors?

Christopher Deadman 2

Comments on UNISON’s landmark victory against the government in respect of employment tribunal fees got me thinking about the whole ‘access to justice’ argument and the role that third-party funders play. I have sat in lots of meetings over the years where funders, some even with a straight face, claim that access to justice is a cornerstone of their business. That is a statement of almost North Korean bogusness. Funders who trot out the access to justice argument are guilty of conflating the by-product of their business with the

August 17th, 2017

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