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Solicitors costs reduced - duplicating counsel's work

The CA has recently massively reduced the amount of costs claimed by a solicitor's firm in a matter where counsel was instructed. To put it in perspective - this was an appeal against a costs order for £23,000 for which counsel's ('reasonable and proportionate') fees were £6,662 - those of the law firm were £71,072! These costs were put forward as 'slightly higher than anticipated' - the court's view was that this was a 'mastery of understatement'.

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Pleadings - third party enquiries

The CA has recently considered the scope of CPR r16.5 which prescribes that:

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MIB – liable for injury on private land

The CA has held that the MIB was liable to pay compensation to someone injured in a car accident on private land. 
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Transfer to CFA – beware!

The HC has considered an interesting case relating to a change in funding arrangements part way though a litigation matter. A firm commenced litigation proceedings relating to delay in a meningitis diagnosis under the legal aid scheme.
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Discontinuance – who pays the costs?

When a claimant discontinues a claim, this may result in relief that the matter is over; however the court must decide who should pay the costs of the litigation. A useful article considers some of the issues arising.
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Service – no duty to point out error

The CA has held that there is no obligation on a firm which is incorrectly served with proceedings to notify the claimant’s lawyers of such an error.
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Group action – stays in Liverpool

It is interesting to note that the High Court has refused to transfer a multibillion-pound class action from Liverpool to London. The action involves some 200,000 claimants who are suing a mining company following the collapse of a dam in Brazil which caused loss of life and homes.

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DPS scheme – White Book incorrect

We reported in our March 2019 edition (p30) on the introduction of the Disclosure Pilot Scheme (DPS) for the Business and Property Courts in Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester and Newcastle.

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RTA claims – no lawyers

The Gazette reports that the MoJ has issued a consultation as to how to create an IT platform to enable unrepresented litigants to progress their own claim.

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LiP – keep informed?

We do not usually report on changes which are not yet in force. However, litigators have been warned to expect changes to the processes relating to litigants in person which might come into effect on 6 April 2019 through an SI (subject to parliamentary approval). 
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Air space and ground below - common parts
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UKUT has held that leases of the airspace above and ground below a leasehold block of flats must be classed as common parts of the building and were able to be acquired. Read more...
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Trespass to land is where a person or persons enters onto or remains on land without the express or implied consent of the person with immediate right to possession, eg where a neighbour builds a... Read more...
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CPR 35.12 provides for discussions between experts. These are not obligatory unless directed by the court, but such direction may be given at any stage of the proceedings. The object of the... Read more...
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A London trading standards team recently prosecuted a director of a company for setting up what was described as a member's club, but which in reality was a lettings agency. The purpose of such was... Read more...
Philosophical belief - scope extended?
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The Equality Act 2010 provides protection against discrimination based on nine characteristics, one of which is any religious or philosophical belief. Not all religions or beliefs are covered by the... Read more...
Pleadings - third party enquiries
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