19 February, 2013
Filed UnderLegal Costs
I knew it was a mistake to start commenting on the new CPR rules at this stage.
Following my post on the ambiguity as to which claims would be subject to the new proportionality test it now appears that a new statutory instrument will be published in March to introduce a new transitional provision within rule 44.3 to deal with this:
“to the effect that costs incurred in respect of work done before 1 April 2013 will not be disallowed if they would have been allowed under the rules in force immediately before that date”.
What makes this truly shocking is that the letter confirming these changes from Lord Justice Stephen Richards, who chairs the rule committee, records the fact that the committee was aware of this problem and agreed to make this change at the meeting on 8 February 2013 which approved the rules that were then released on 12/13th February. However, when releasing the SI there was no mention that they had already decided to change this in at least one crucial aspect.
How are practitioners meant to prepare for the changes and train staff when, ludicrously late in the day as the rules have been published, we can’t even trust the accuracy of what has been released?
Good luck to legal publishers working to a March publication date.