The Court of Appeal has upheld a decision that a leading media law firm could not recover hundreds of thousands of pounds in costs because its conditional fee agreement did not cover much of the work it undertook. Lord Justice McCombe said he rejected the appeal “not without regret”.
Deed of indemnity plus ATE enough for security for costs, but not to release solicitors from undertakings
A deed of indemnity from an after-the-event insurer was a sufficient replacement for security for costs, the High Court has ruled, but it did not release their solicitors from undertakings given previously in lieu of an order for security.
Law Society joins battle over whether third-party capture insurer still has to pay solicitors’ costs
The Law Society has been granted permission to intervene in the Supreme Court’s hearing of a case that made a major strike against the practice of third-party capture in personal injury. The Court of Appeal ordered insurance company Haven to pay the claimants’ solicitors the costs they would have earned had they not settled directly.
Claimants did not act unreasonably in switching funding from a damages-based agreement to a conditional fee agreement shortly before trial, even though the defendants are now facing a much larger bill, a costs judge has ruled.
A regional costs judge was “quite wrong” to assume that “his underwriting skill was better than that of the underwriter” and slashing an after-the-event insurance premium by 85%, the High Court has ruled. It also found that the claimant had little choice but to accept the quoted premium “and the necessity of so doing makes the premium proportionate”.
Clinical negligence claimants can continue to take out after-the-event insurance for expert reports when they enter into conditional fee agreements, and premiums will be recoverable even if the case settles before the reports are commissioned, the Court of Appeal has decided in a major ruling today.
After-the-event insurance which can be voided does not constitute adequate security for costs, the Court of Appeal has ruled. Overturning the decision of Mr Justice Snowden, it said the case raised “important questions of principle” because there may be a tendency for judges at first instance to accept that an ATE policy can stand as security for costs.
Proportionality involves more than simply comparing costs budgets with the size of the damages claimed, a High Court judge has made clear. Mr Justice Nugee was ruling in a £350m claim, where the defendants’ costs budgets amounted to only about 7% of the claim.