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Personal Injury Law Journal: June 2014

Paul Jones highlights a recent case concerning costs incurred during the transitional provisions

The 1 April 2013 brought a new test for considering whether costs were proportionate whereby costs that do not bear a reasonable relationship to the value of the claim and other matters will not be recoverable on the standard basis even where those costs were necessarily incurred (CPR 44.3). However, CPR 44.3(7) confirms that this new test will only apply to costs incurred after 1 April and for costs incurred prior to that date, the old rules will continue to apply. As this transitional provision will continue to apply to large numbers of cases for the foreseeable future, the recent case of Finglands Coaches Ltd v O’Hare [2014] dealing with the old rules relating to proportionality is still an important decision.

Emma Sole reports on the effects of the judgment in Woodland v Essex County Council [2013]

In handing down its decision in Woodland v Essex County Council [2013] the Supreme Court expressly extended the law on non-delegable duties. This extension of law was set against a backdrop of judicial concern and caution in the High Court and Court of Appeal.

Fatal Accidents Act; jurisdiction; assessment of damages

In this case the Supreme Court considered whether provisions of the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 applied to the assessment of damages where the substantive law governing the tort was German law.

Charles Bagot analyses the consequences of a recent decision

This article considers a recent Supreme Court decision concerning the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 (the FAA) in which striking comments were made which might give a hint as to the direction in which future reform of fatal accident compensation is headed.

Justin Valentine argues that disclosure of all medical records in personal injury litigation is not necessary with modest claims

It is not a precondition for bringing a modest claim for personal injury that a claimant’s entire medical history no matter how irrelevant and personal should be disclosed. Defendants often request disclosure of a claimant’s entire medical history to challenge credibility. That is an understandable aim in the context of many public liability and road traffic accident claims. However, that purpose can be achieved without disclosure of all medical records.

Bill Braithwaite QC discusses the difficult issues that arise

Future care is almost always the most substantial element of catastrophic brain and spine claims, and it is essential to get it right.

Peter Kirby QC, a High Court costs assessor, provides guidance on how to ensure you recover your costs

Billy Joel once sang, ‘I’ve gotta get it right the first time, that’s the main thing’, and a Case Management Order (CMO) should be treated in exactly this way.

Tim Hirst considers the potential pitfalls of trying to prevent a limitation defence

Perhaps as a result of the effectiveness of the pre-action protocols, ‘standstill agreements’ have become quite common. The version I have seen simply comprises an agreement that, ‘time will be suspended’. Others refer to a ‘Time Stop’ agreement. I assume that it was intended that the defendant would not raise any limitation defence relying on time running during the period of the agreement. Surely this is nonsense? No-one can prevent time passing.