Defendants' costs orders in proceedings commenced prior to 1 October 2012 [Archived]
Defendants' costs orders in proceedings commenced prior to 1 October 2012 [Archived]

The following Corporate Crime guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Defendants' costs orders in proceedings commenced prior to 1 October 2012 [Archived]
  • Jurisdiction to make a defence costs order
  • Exercise of the discretion to make a defence costs order
  • Procedure
  • The costs order
  • Making a claim for costs to be determined under the Costs in Criminal Cases (General) Regulations 1986
  • Determination of the claim under the Costs in Criminal Cases (General) Regulations 1986
  • Re-determination and appeal

ARCHIVED: This archived Practice Note is being retained for historical interest and to assist practitioners dealing with cases where the old provisions apply.

The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO 2012) made significant changes to the regime which governs the making of a defendants' costs order (DCO) under the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 (POA 1985), applicable to all proceedings on or after the 1st October 2012.

See Practice Note: Acquitted defendants' costs orders in criminal proceedings.

The procedure for awarding costs in respect of proceedings commenced prior to the 1st October 2012 continues to be governed by the provisions of the POA 1985 before amendment by LAPSO 2012.

These provisions are explained below.

Under the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985, Pt II (POA 1985), acquitted defendants who have privately funded their litigation may obtain their costs out of central funds (this also applies to private prosecutors).

A defence costs order (DCO) is an order for the payment out of central funds of an amount the court considers reasonably sufficient to compensate a defendant for any expenses properly incurred by him in the proceedings. Costs will include those incurred in the lower courts but will not include expenses that do not directly relate to the proceedings, eg loss of earnings. Where the party in whose favour the costs order is made