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Updates, Insight & Analysis


Analysis: Costs outside of the Provisional Assessment

Mar 31 2016

Navigating the maze of agreeing costs

Contrary to the intentions of the rule makers and the spirit of the CPR, provisional assessment proceedings do not always run smoothly. The aggressive and often counter-productive stance taken by paying parties during negotiations frequently continues after the provisional assessment hearing, leaving you with the unwelcome and arduous task of agreeing your costs of provisional assessment with the losing party. The costs of provisional assessment are capped at £1,500 plus VAT and Court fee.

The paying party will often manufacture pedantic arguments and utilise byzantine tactics in an attempt to eradicate the receiving party's assessment costs. Attempting to agree the 'costs of the costs' can quickly develop into a time-consuming and costly challenge. Unfortunately, this is an all too familiar experience at Civil & Commercial.

However, at Civil & Commercial we have had some significant success in being awarded costs over and above the provisional assessment cap in light of the unnecessary additional work generated by the losing party. Practice Direction 14.6 supplementing CPR 47 provides the relevant authority, with the costs of written submissions and assessment cost negotiations being ordered in addition to those of the provisional assessment.

There are clearly consequences for failing to accept defeat graciously.

Daniel Jones - Costs Draftsman, Civil & Commercial