News

Win for open justice as tax tribunal allows non-party access to HMRC pleadings

KPMG

The First-tier Tribunal has “inherent jurisdiction” to give non-parties access to documents, its tax chamber has ruled in allowing KPMG to see documents from another case involving HM Revenue & Customs.

September 12th, 2018

APIL and Law Society push for extended QOCs and reformed DBAs

percent blocks

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers has called for qualified one-way costs shifting to be extended beyond personal injury and the cap on damages-based agreements to be doubled to 50% for fast-track cases with fixed costs.

September 11th, 2018

Vannin set to raise £70m from stock market listing

Dan Craddock

Third-party litigation funder Vannin Capital has announced its intention to float on the London Stock Exchange next month. The existing shareholders are to make 25% of its stock available in a bid to raise £70m.

September 10th, 2018

Money can’t buy me love: Court of Appeal overturns non-party costs order

The Beatles

A High Court judge was wrong to order a non-party costs order where the respondent had not been warned that the applicant was going to seek one, the Court of Appeal has ruled. The judge was wrong to disregard the respondent’s submission that he would have acted differently if he had been.

September 10th, 2018

Firm to pay indemnity costs after “premature” GLO application

Volkswagen logo

A law firm which “prematurely” issued a group litigation order application to bring VW emissions claims ahead of other firms has been hit with an indemnity costs order by the High Court.

September 5th, 2018

Three-quarters of new deputy High Court judges went to Oxbridge

Francis Fitpatrick QC

Three-quarters of new deputy High Court judges, announced yesterday, are Oxbridge graduates, it has emerged. Some 24 of the new cohort of 32 attended the two elite universities, with a further three educated at leading London universities. Nine of the 32 are women, and just one a person of colour.

September 5th, 2018

Bar Council: Solicitors refusing to pay barristers’ unrecovered fees in CFA cases

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An increasing number of solicitors do not accept a contractual obligation to pay counsel’s unrecovered fees in personal injury and medical negligence cases, the Bar Council has complained. It also said QOCS was leading to more inappropriate claims of fundamental dishonesty.

September 4th, 2018

“Little enthusiasm” among solicitors and judges for electronic bill

Iain Stark - Weightmans shot

Many solicitors and judges were not ready for the electronic bill of costs when it became compulsory in April and few are keen on it now, according to a survey by the Association of Costs Lawyers. There are, however, small signs that solicitors are getting better at budgeting.

September 3rd, 2018

Tribunals must “proceed with care” over wasted costs orders where privilege is not waived

Mrs Justice Simler

Employment tribunals should generally give the benefit of doubt to a legal representative facing a wasted costs applications where their client refuses to waive privilege, the president of the Employment Appeal Tribunal has ruled.

August 31st, 2018

Court of Appeal: Judge wrong to jail unrepresented woman for contempt

Lord Justice Bean

A judge was wrong to jail an unrepresented woman for contempt of court without giving her more time to find a lawyer, the Court of Appeal has ruled. It was “unrealistic” to expect the woman to be able to find a lawyer within one and a half days while in prison.

August 30th, 2018

Go easy on praising advocates in your rulings, judges told

Lord Carloway

The head of Scotland’s judiciary has cautioned judges to be “circumspect” when praising the advocates before them for fear of giving the impression of bias, particularly where litigants in person are involved.

August 28th, 2018

Bar Council: New open justice rule could disadvantage litigants in person

Ministry of Justice sign

A new rule putting the parties under an explicit obligation to disclose to the other side communications with the court could disadvantage litigants in person (LiPs), the Bar Council has warned.

August 24th, 2018

High Court: No duty on solicitors to alert other side to errors

Business on a laptop

Litigation solicitors are not under a duty to alert their opponents to errors which they have not caused, the High Court has ruled. The judge said failing to draw attention to mistakes did not amount to “technical game playing”.

August 23rd, 2018

Product liability claims covered by PL protocol, claimant solicitors told

Claire Laver

Claimant lawyers are wrong to argue that product liability claims fall outside the protocol for low-value public liability claims, a defendant solicitor has said. Claire Laver said the scope of the protocol was clearly set out in its rules and included specific exceptions.

August 22nd, 2018

Judge wrong to give paying party benefit of doubt over implied retainer

Mr Justice Roth

A costs judge was wrong to give the paying party the benefit of the doubt when she was not sure if there was an implied retainer in existence, a High Court judge has ruled. He also found that a consultant at a law firm who did much of the work for a case in which he was a party was entitled to his costs.

August 21st, 2018