- A court can make an award of costs in a foreign currency on a summary assessment (Cathay Pacific Airlines Ltd v Lufthansa Technik AG)
- What are the practical implications of this case?
- What was the background?
- What did the court decide?
- Case details
Dispute Resolution analysis: A firm of solicitors based in England and Wales accepted instructions from Lufthansa, a client based in Germany. The solicitors rendered bills to Lufthansa in euros—and counsel rendered bills in sterling. An award of costs was made in Lufthansa’s favour. Lufthansa sought for the costs to be calculated in euros. Cathay Pacific—the paying party—argued that the court did not have jurisdiction to award costs in a foreign currency. It was held that there was no binding authority to prevent an award of costs in a foreign currency, nor was there any rule which had the same effect. Awarding costs in euros was held to be consistent with the overriding objective. Accordingly, the court awarded costs summarily assessed at €25,000. Written by Alex Bagnall, costs lawyer at Total Legal Solutions.
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