Costs changes affecting the retail industry

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13 December, 2023

Claire Opacic

As you may have seen within the press or on our website the rules in respect of costs in civil matters changed in October 2023. My colleague Siobhan Hardy issued an article in October summarising the changes which is linked here but by way of brief summary fixed costs now apply for civil cases up to a value of £100,000. That change will however take effect at different stages dependant on the type of case faced. For personal injury claims the new regime will apply when the accident occurred on or after 1 October 2023. For disease claims the new regime applies for any letters of claim after 1 October 2023 but for all other civil claims it will apply to any case issued on or after 1 October 2023.

This means that the new rules for extended fixed costs will only apply to newly received personal injury claims but if you are facing any threatened litigation with respect to property damage matters you need to be familiar with the new rules and the impact this may have on the economics of your potential litigation now. To assist with this Forbes have launched a new fixed costs calculator on our website which will enable you to easily assess the same. Of course our old fixed costs calculator also remains in place for those personal injury matters still in run off under the old rules. Both calculators can be found here.

There are a few exceptions to the new fixed costs but most will not affect retail or leisure businesses. The one to potentially be aware of is the exception for jury trials. Whilst this does happen very rarely, a party involved in a false imprisonment case can request a trial by jury, and so if you do face such a claim following perhaps an intervention at a store by security, the request for a jury trial may be used to potentially avoid the application of fixed costs and so it is something to bear in mind. If however you do have any queries about either costs regime please do contact us to discuss the same.

For more information contact Claire Opacic in our Insurance department via email or phone on 01618308817. Alternatively send any question through to Forbes Solicitors via our online Contact Form.

Learn more about our Insurance department here

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