Detailed assessment—points of dispute and reply
Detailed assessment—points of dispute and reply

The following Dispute Resolution guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Detailed assessment—points of dispute and reply
  • What are points of dispute?
  • Form of the points of dispute
  • Serving points of dispute
  • Time limits for serving points of dispute—consequences
  • Time limits for serving points of dispute—calculating the time period
  • Time limits for serving points of dispute—changing it
  • Reply to points of dispute
  • Varying points of dispute and reply
  • Next stage

What are points of dispute?

The receiving party produces a bill of costs which sets out the costs it is seeking to claim under the detailed assessment procedure. The paying party is required to review the bill of costs and identify any items it disputes. The paying party then sets out the disputed items in a document known as the 'points of dispute' (CPR 47.9(1)).

Any other party to the detailed assessment proceedings may also dispute the items in their own 'points of dispute'.

Form of the points of dispute

When considering the form that the points of dispute should take, CPR PD 47, para 8.2 requires:

'Points of Dispute must be short and to the point. They must follow Precedent G in the Schedule of Costs Precedents annexed to this Practice Direction, so far as practicable. They must:

(a) Identify any general points or matters of principle which require decision before the individual items in the bill are addressed; and

(b) Identify specific points, stating concisely the nature and grounds of dispute.’

The requirement for the points of dispute to ‘be short and to the point’ means that the points of dispute must be focussed. However, it raises issues as to the level of detail that is required. This was considered by the Court of Appeal in Ainsworth v Stewarts Law LLP. In