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Four years on from Jackson Reform

April 13 2017

On 1st April 2013 changes to civil litigation costs and funding came into force after Lord Justice Jackson’s review of the system during 2009-2010. The main objective of the changes, which were introduced via the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (2012), was to reduce litigation costs. In particular, the alterations affected the areas of paying for litigation, managing costs and managing litigation.

Paying for litigation

Damaged based agreements were introduced and it was ruled that it would no longer be possible to recover CFA success fees or ATE premiums from the losing party (with exceptions for insolvency as well as privacy claims). In addition, there was a 10% rise in tortious general damages (which include non-financial losses such as defamation, pain, suffering and loss of amenity).

Managing costs

There were also changes which affected the way costs are managed. In particular, there was an increased focus placed on proportionality, meaning that the money spent on a case should be proportionate to what was at stake – whether this be in terms of reputation or a monetary amount. A requirement for parties involved in multi-track cases to file prospective costs was also introduced as was Qualified One Way Costs Shifting meaning that in cases of personal injury and negligence claims successful defendants are now required to meet their own case costs.

Managing litigation

There were also several alterations in terms of managing litigation. These included the increased monitoring of experts’ costs to keep them justifiable and competitive and the power to limit the length of witness statements to keep ensure this part of the process was not unnecessarily long for all involved. Stricter rules regarding disclosure also mean each party is now required to file and exchange potential disclosure information earlier on in proceedings.

Grahame Stowe Bateson is a leading provider of a full range of legal services to individuals across Leeds and the Yorkshire region. For more information about our services or to book an appointment please call our office on 0113 246 8163.


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