Last updateTue, 24 Feb 2015 5pm

Gareth Keillor and Tom Brown review the test for establishing the existence of assets for freezing injunctions

In the recent case of Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority v Bestfort Development LLP [2017], the Court of Appeal has held that, to obtain a freezing injunction, an applicant must establish either a ‘good arguable case’ or ‘grounds for belief’ that assets exist. It rejected the higher threshold of a ‘likelihood’ that assets exist, but held that it is not enough for the applicant to assert that the respondent is apparently wealthy and must have assets somewhere.

Russell Hill and Oliver Ward-Jones discuss the liability of office holders for costs in CFA cases

The recent Court of Appeal case of Stevensdrake Ltd v Hunt [2017] provides guidance on whether the office holder is liable to meet the legal costs in conditional fee agreement (CFA) cases where there are insufficient recoveries in the estate to meet those costs.

Susan Rosser and Jonny Cohen consider a recent case of accidental disclosure

In the recent case of Atlantisrealm Ltd v Intelligent Land Investments (Renewable Energy) Ltd [2017], the Court of Appeal considered again the principles that should be applied in granting equitable relief to a party which has inadvertently disclosed privileged materials to the other side.

Tom Snelling and Lauma Skruzmane continue their examination of litigation after Brexit

In our previous article, we examined how jurisdiction and recognition and enforcement will be dealt with after Brexit, from the default regime to potential options. In this part, we look at post-Brexit problems and possible solutions for litigators.

Gwendoline Davies and Claire Acklam make sense of the rules and recent case law on proportionality of costs

Proportionality. Since the introduction of Jackson LJ’s sweeping reforms to civil litigation procedure in England and Wales in 2013, this word has had a fundamental impact on the level of legal costs a successful party can recover from its opponent at the conclusion of a case, and consequently on a party’s decision whether to litigate at all. No party wishes to incur unreasonable and disproportionate costs, but there is often a disconnect between costs reasonably and necessarily incurred in the context of the litigation, and costs which the court may consider to be proportionate. While the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) provide rules and guidance which go so far, there is currently no prescriptive method for ascertaining proportionality of costs and the approach taken by the judiciary varies on a case-by-case basis. In this article we shall examine the key case law on proportionality of costs and ask whether any key themes can be identified to assist those involved in, or considering, litigation.

Sarah McCann reports on a recent application for relief from sanctions

Much has been written about the court’s discretion to grant relief from sanctions pursuant to CPR 3.9 over recent years, due to the reformulation of the rule in April 2013 and the landmark Court of Appeal decision in Mitchell MP v News Group Newspapers Ltd [2013]. The strictness of the approach in Mitchell led to an outcry from academics and practitioners, but that has now been allayed by the Court of Appeal in Denton v TH White Ltd [2014].

Fiona Simpson examines the merits of the Shorter Trials Scheme

In September 2015 the Shorter Trials Scheme (STS) was introduced to run as a pilot from 1 October 2015 to 30 September 2018 for cases in certain sections of the English High Court – the Commercial Court, the Technology and Construction Court, the Chancery Division and the Mercantile Court.

Richard Marshall, Clare Arthurs and Nicole Finlayson look at Jackson LJ’s recent report

On 21 July 2017, Jackson LJ published that essential summertime reading, his Review of Civil Litigation Costs: Supplemental Report – Fixed Recoverable Costs (the report). It is a 135-page page-turner, about Jackson LJ’s pursuit of the ‘holy grail’: a system in which the actual costs of each party are a modest fraction of the sum in issue, and the winner recovers those modest costs from the loser (para 1.2, p11). A noble quest, or a Sisyphean task?

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