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TMC respectfully disagrees with Master Cook’s statement regarding whether costs lawyers should attend costs budgeting hearings

In recent months, the official status of the costs lawyer profession has continued to grow. We’ve recently re-launched our degree-level professional qualification, and have been formally recognised within the new guideline hourly rates (GHR) regime for the first time. It’s therefore unfortunate that Queen’s Bench Master David Cook has questioned our role in the process.

Court fees battle enters new phase

The war of words between the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and the legal profession over court fees escalated during the last week of February. Nine signatories, including the Law Society, Bar Council and Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, have now signed a pre-action protocol letter as a prelude to a possible judicial review of the MoJ’s plan. The letter claims six grounds for challenging the MoJ’s scheme – including that they would be tantamount to ‘selling justice’, contrary to the principles of Magna Carta.

ACL granted leave to intervene in Coventry v Lawrence

The Association of Costs Lawyers (ACL) has been granted leave to intervene in the case of Coventry v Lawrence. The case will consider whether the recoverability of additional liabilities (ie success fees and ATE insurance premiums) under the Access to Justice Act 1999 infringed Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights and/or Article 1 of the First Protocol to the Convention.

Second office

In September 2008 we opened our second office in Wooburn Green, Buckinghamshire. This has given us the additional space to allow us to take on new clients while maintaining and further enhancing our service levels.

New member of team

We are proud to welcome our latest team member, Joanna Sinfield. Joanna qualified as a solicitor in 1995 and was in private practice until November 2007. She has been involved in all areas of costs drafting and negotiation since August 2006 with a particular interest and specialism for personal injury CFA funded work.

New Member of Team

Neil joins after 9 years experience with another leading costs drafting firm where he gained considerable experience in both commercial costs disputes and personal injury CFA funded work. He is also widely experienced in attending detailed assessments both at the SCCO and county courts.