3 ways to optimise your client’s cost recovery (Hobbs)

3 ways to optimise your client’s cost recovery (Hobbs)

magnifyMaster O’Hare, in his post-provisional assessment of costs in Hobbs v Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust [2015] Lexis Citation 263, has helpfully considered and applied the relatively ‘little by way of authoritative guidance’ on Rules 44.3(5) and 44.3(2) of the CPR.

As such, the judgment offers various practical tips to practitioners on how to optimise their client’s recoverability of costs, including:

  1. for each aspect of the case, use the lowest level of and/or cheapest lawyer appropriate—to get a Grade A hourly rate you will not only have to satisfy the court that the solicitor was a Grade A lawyer but that they were carrying out Grade A work
  1. only take steps in the action which are likely to be deemed necessary and reasonable. Even then, ensure the costs of those steps are proportionate and that you are able to persuade the court it is fair the other party be required to pay them
  1. where costs were incurred both before and after the implementation of the April 2013 Jackson Reforms, proportionality will be determined by reference to the Lownds and the Jackson tests respectively—ensure you are prepared to address and persuade the court on each item in the bill of costs on the relevant basis

Further information

Lexis®PSL DR subscribers can see the full analysis of the Hobbs v Guy's & St Thomas decision here. If you are not a subscriber, click here for a free trial to access.


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About the author:

Virginia specialises in general domestic and international commercial litigation, arbitration and alternative dispute resolution.

Virginia trained, qualified and practiced with Pinsent Masons before moving to Marriott Harrison where she continued in practice for a further seven years.

In practice, Virginia acted in a variety of general commercial disputes covering areas including  intellectual property, fraud, defamation, misrepresentation, breach of contract, debt recovery, breach of restrictive covenants and company and shareholders’ disputes.

Virginia is Head of Dispute Resolution at Lexis®PSL and, when not focused on the strategic development and operational requirements of the Dispute Resolution module, her content work focuses on case management and evidence in civil litigation. She also regularly contributes to the LexisNexis Dispute Resolution Blog.