Last updateTue, 24 Feb 2015 5pm

Paul Jones outlines the latest decision which concerns hourly rates

Of all the reforms implemented by Jackson LJ, costs budgets is the issue that continues to give judges and practitioners the biggest headaches. From the chaos created by the Court of Appeal’s decisions over relief from sanctions to recent decisions regarding the interplay between costs budgets and detailed assessment, the issue is one which continues to create problems for all concerned. The recent decision in RNB v London Borough of Newham [2017] is a classic case in point.

Philip Turton examines Bussey, Williams and the problem of low-level asbestos exposure

If, as seems likely, the recent decision in Bussey v Anglia Heating [2017] marks a fresh attack on Williams v University of Birmingham [2011], insurers and defendants’ legal representatives may have to prepare for a more difficult future in low-dose mesothelioma claims. While the decision itself favoured the defendant, HHJ Yelton, who tried the case as a High Court judge, expressly rejected the invitation of the claimant’s counsel not to follow Williams on the basis that, if that case had been wrongly decided by the Court of Appeal, it was a matter for them or for the Supreme Court to overturn it. It thus seems likely that the claimant will strive to renew his argument before a higher forum.

Patrick West highlights a recent credit hire case where the key issue was whether a hire organisation has immunity from a non-party costs order

In Select Car Rentals (North West) Ltd v Esure Services Ltd [2017], involving a claim for £23,456.85 for credit hire charges, the court held that third-party credit hire companies might be vulnerable to adverse costs orders and that CPR 44.16 had not altered the powers of courts to exercise their discretion in such matters pursuant to CPR 46.2.

Nicola Hall investigates whether treatment costs for drug addiction following an accident resulting in chronic pain can form part of a special damage claim

It is widely recognised that the UK population is ageing, with increasing co-morbidities and one in seven people now experiencing pain. This leads to an increasing need for pain relief.

Darren Lewis reviews a recent Court of Appeal decision clarifying QOCS where there have been pre and post 1 April 2013 conditional fee agreements

The Court of Appeal judgment in Catalano v Espley-Tyas Development Group Ltd [2017] has delivered some much-needed clarity to litigants as to when qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS) protection is afforded in cases where there was both a pre 1 April 2013 and a post 1 April 2013 conditional fee agreement (CFA) (aka ‘a pre-commencement funding arrangement’).

Geoffrey Simpson-Scott considers what is next for fixed costs in clinical negligence litigation

Tremulously clicking the hyperlink to Sir Rupert Jackson’s Supplemental Report: Fixed Recoverable Costs on 31 July 2017, I thought:

Huw Davies considers whether an injury to feeling is sufficient to trigger QOCS protection

While discrimination claims are usually heard in the employment tribunals, s114 of the Equality Act 2010 provides jurisdiction to the County Courts to hear discrimination claims against, inter alia, services providers (under Part 3 of the Act), landlords (under Part 4), education establishments (Part 6) and associations (Part 7).

Stress at work, psychiatric injury, disciplinary investigations

Following a 15-day trial before Thirlwall LJ (as she now is; she was promoted to the Court of Appeal during the course of the litigation), the Ministry of Justice was found liable for prolonging a disciplinary investigation and accompanying suspension against the claimant prison officer (Marsh v Ministry of Justice [2017]). These failings were found to have caused the premature termination of the claimant’s career due to psychiatric injury. He was awarded over £286,000.