The following Dispute Resolution guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
Proposals are being considered by the CPR Committee in relation to CPR PD 3E. For details, see: Tracker—costs management and costs budgeting review and future changes—Proposals to deal with revisions to costs budgets.
Once a costs budget has been completed and agreed with the other side, or approved by the court, the court will undertake active costs management of the case throughout the proceedings. The parties therefore need to monitor their costs budgets to ensure that they are staying within the budgeted costs for each phase of the proceedings. If the costs incurred are greater than those set out in the costs budget, it is unlikely that the additional costs spent will be recoverable on a costs assessment.
CPR 3.18(b) allows a costs judge to depart from an approved/agreed court budget when undertaking a costs assessment on a standard basis, but there must be a good reason to do so—simply failing to keep track of costs such that the estimate is exceeded is not be a good reason. For guidance on the application of CPR 3.18, see Practice Note: Detailed assessment and costs budgeting.
It is therefore essential to:
prepare the costs budget with care to ensure that it fully takes into account the work required to be undertaken
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