29 October, 2015
Shahow Qader & Ors v Esure Services Ltd (2015) QBD (TCC)
A Judge has ruled that fixed recoverable costs should apply to RTA cases which start in the portal and are then transferred to the multi-track.
At first instance, the district judge ordered that fixed costs would apply on the basis that the determining factor was value not track.
The Claimants appealed the decision, arguing that the district judge had failed to interpret the rules in a purposive manner. In addition, the appellants submitted that CPR 45.29A had not been interpreted in accordance with the overriding objective. It was argued that there is discretion for the court to decide whether to apply fixed costs. The judge rejected all of the appellants' arguments, including the assertion that the application of the fixed costs regime denied the Claimants the right to a fair trial.
Whilst the case of Qader & Ors v Esure Services Ltd relates to a RTA claim, the ruling equally applies to EL/PL claims costs (post 31/7/13) which are commenced in the portal and are then transferred to the multi-track.
Furthermore, it was made clear in the judgment that even when a case is allocated to the multi-track and fraud is raised as a potential issue, fixed costs would still be applied if the case answers the description of a low value personal injury claim. It is therefore evident that going forward the application of fixed costs in multi-track cases will inevitably save both insurers and defendants significant costs.