Entries by Toby Moreton

An Interest Exclusive Part 36 Offer Is Not A Part 36 Offer

Can a Part 36 Offer which excludes interest be validly made either generally or in the context of proceedings?

It is been an issue on which a number of judges have held diverging views.

In the present case, His Honour Judge Dight CBE, upholding Deputy Master Campbell’s first instance decision, had concluded that an offer exclusive of interest cannot be a valid Part 36 offer.

In contrast, in a matter we reported in May, Horne v Prescot (No 1) Ltd [2019] EWHC 1322 (QB), Nicol J, dismissing an appeal from Master Nagalingam, held that, at least in the context of detailed assessment proceedings, an offer excluding interest can be an effective Part 36 offer.

So, what is the answer?

The Scope Of An Appeal From Provisional Assessment

Dismissing this appeal against a decision of Master Leonard in the SCCO Mr Justice Stewart held that pursuant to CPR 47.24, the scope of an appeal against decisions made in the course of a provisional assessment is limited to a re-hearing only of any specific decisions which had been challenged at an oral hearing. In other words, if it hasn’t first been challenged at an oral hearing pursuant to CPR 47.15(7), it cannot be appealed.

CPR 38.6: Discontinuance And Costs – The Legal Principles

This “long-running and ill-tempered dispute” between directors and shareholders of a residents association ended in September 2019 when the claimant filed a Notice of Discontinuance.
Master Clark was asked to determine whether the court should exercise its power under CPR 38.6 to disapply the default rule that the claimant should pay the costs of the claim.
His judgment provides a useful look at the principles governing costs following discontinuance.

CPR 36.17(4): Another Case Of Just Consequences

There have been a number of cases recently dealing with the consequences under CPR 36.17(4) of a claimant beating its own offer. In this case the claimant beat its offer of £250,000 by over £200,000, being awarded approximately £458,500 at trial. The defendant argued that notwithstanding this fact, it would be unjust to visit the consequences set out in CPR 36.17 upon them.

CFA Is A Contentious Business Agreement, High Court Rules

The Law Society’s Model Form CFA contains a specific clause providing that “The parties acknowledge and agree that this agreement is not a Contentious Business Agreement within the terms of the Solicitors Act 1974.”. It was argued by the solicitors in this case that even absent this specific clause (as was the case here) any CFA which provides that no fees are recoverable in the event of failure, cannot be a Contentious Business Agreement within the meaning of s59 Solicitors Act 1974

CPR 36.17 And The Just Rewards Of A Good Part 36 Offer

Mr Justice O’Farrell rounded up the authorities on CPR 36.17 and found that a Claimant who had beaten its own Part 36 Offer of £875,000 by less than £5,000 was nonetheless entitled to the benefits conferred by the rule, including enhanced interest on damages and costs, indemnity costs from 21 days after the date of the offer and an additional amount of £65,123.77.