Colin Crooks v Hendricks Lovell [2016] EWCA Civ 8

The court considered the correct interpretation of a Defendant’s Part 36 offer in a personal injury claim that was stated to be net of the recoverable benefits payable to the Compensation Recovery Unit.

The Defendant had made a Part 36 offer for “£18,500 net of CRU [a certificate of recoverable benefits issued by the Compensation Recovery Unit] and inclusive of interim payments in the sum of £18,500”. The defendant ticked the box which stated that the offer was made “without regard to any liability for recoverable benefits”. A CRU certificate of £16, 262 was issued. The claimant obtained judgment for £29,550. A decision on costs was postponed pending the Claimant’s appeal against the CRU certificate. The Claimant then obtained a revised CRU certificate which was £9,502 lower, because some of the benefits paid were not attributable to the accident. The recorder concluded that the Claimant had failed to beat the Defendant’s part 36 offer.

The Court held that the Defendant’s offer was a valid offer under Part 36. The natural meaning of an amount “net of” something else was the amount that remained after a deduction. The offer was for £18,500, leaving aside any liability in respective of recoverable benefits. The real measure of whether the Claimant had beaten the offer was whether the total payment he actually received was more or less than the amount of the offer. The judgment left £22,789 net of recoverable benefits and so the Claimant had beaten the Part 36 offer.

February 28, 2016 · Editorial Team · Comments Closed
Posted in: Cases