What is fundamental dishonesty?

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

  • What is fundamental dishonesty?
  • Dishonesty
  • Fundamental
  • Differences between section 57 and CPR 44.16
  • Application of fundamental dishonesty
  • Section 57 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015
  • QOCS
  • Where allegations of fundamental dishonesty have failed
  • Practical tips
  • Conclusions

What is fundamental dishonesty?

This Practice Note considers fundamental dishonesty both in the context of section 57 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015 (CJCA 2015) and the loss of qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS) protection under CPR 44.16.

The term ‘fundamental dishonesty’ is referred to in both CJCA 2015, s 57 and CPR 44.16(1):

  1. CJCA 2015, s 57 allows for an entire personal injury claim to be dismissed, including any genuine elements, on the basis that the claimant has been fundamentally dishonest in relation to the primary claim or a related claim

  2. CPR 44.16(1) provides an exception to QOCS protection by allowing costs orders to be enforced to their full extent in fundamental dishonesty cases

However, the term fundamental dishonesty is not defined in CJCA 2015 or the CPR and its meaning and scope has therefore been left to the court’s discretion.

For a look at the case law to date on fundamental dishonesty, see: Fundamental dishonesty—case tracker.

For more information on CJCA 2015, s 57, see Practice Note: Personal injury claims and the Criminal Justice and Courts Act.

For further guidance on QOCS, see Practice Notes: Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS) and Qualified one-way costs shifting (QOCS)—case tracker.


Dishonesty is to be judged according to the test set out by the Supreme Court in Ivey:

  1. the court should first concern itself subjectively with the actual state of the

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