Summary of Recent Cases – Costs

Costs to be paid for detailed assessment when Claimant only beat offer by a small margin

Rangos v Secretary of State of Business Innovation and Skill & Anor (2012), Ch D, 24/04/12

The appellant appealed against a Costs Master’s Order requiring him to pay the costs of detailed assessment having won the underlying proceedings. After a long and costs costs proceeding the Master awarded the appellant only £1,176 more than a settlement offer of £85,000 which had been made at the time the appellant’s bill of costs had been originally served. It was held that there was no regime built into CPR r.47.18 which governed the costs of detailed assessment, rather an overall assessment of the circumstances was necessary. It was held the Master had undoubtedly been entitled to consider the original offer as reasonable and had not treated Carver v BAA Plc [2008] EWCA Civ 412 which dealt with Part 36 offers as requiring him to come to a particular conclusion.

A party was entitled to recover costs in a case involving a low velocity rear end shunt which far exceeded the damages accepted under a Part 36 offer and the predictive costs regime did not operate

Debbie Letts v Royal Sun Alliance Plc [2012] EWHC 875 (QB)

It was held that the test when considering the Order of a Costs Officer was whether, within an ambit of generous appreciation accorded to a specialist judge exercising the costs function, it could be said that the decision of the costs judge was wrong. On the facts his decision had not been wrong. Further, there was no reason for predictive costs to operate as a cap on what was properly recoverable under a Pt 44 assessment. By his words “but not predictive costs” he had declined an invitation to conduct the assessment in accordance with Pt 45, and had acted entirely legitimately.

May 27, 2012 · Editorial Team · Comments Closed
Posted in: Cases