Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS)
Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS)

The following PI & Clinical Negligence practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS)
  • What is QOCS?
  • Effect of QOCS—CPR 44.14
  • Exceptions to QOCS where court permission is not required—CPR 44.15
  • No reasonable grounds for bringing the proceedings
  • Conduct of the claimant
  • Exceptions to QOCS where court permission is required—CPR 44.16
  • Claim is fundamentally dishonest
  • Proceedings include a claim for the benefit of another person
  • Claim with non-personal injury elements
  • More...

What is QOCS?

Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS) was introduced on 1 April 2013 as part of the Jackson costs reforms following the removal of a claimant’s right to recover additional liabilities from the defendant, ie success fees and after the event (ATE) insurance premiums. The relevant CPR provisions are CPR 44.13 to CPR 44.17 and CPR PD 44, para 12.

QOCS applies to personal injury and fatal accidents claims (under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976 (FAA 1976) and the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1934) which are not funded by a ‘pre-commencement funding arrangement’. A pre-commencement funding arrangement is defined in CPR 48 but essentially it means a conditional fee agreement (CFA) entered into before 1 April 2013, ie before the removal of the claimant’s right to recover additional liabilities from the defendant under Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO 2012).

The QOCS regime limits a losing claimant’s liability to pay costs and provides for circumstances where a defendant’s costs can be fully enforced with or without court permission.

The QOCS regime applies to:

  1. claims against the Motor Insurers’ Bureau

  2. a claimant or counter-claimant making a personal injury claim

  3. an appeal (this includes a second appeal, an appeal brought by a defendant and where the court has declined to exercise its discretionary powers to limit recoverable costs under CPR 52.19). For further information

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