- Costs, compliance and anonymity (Xanthopoulos v Rakshina)
- What are the practical implications of this case?
- What was the background?
- What did the court decide?
Family analysis: In Xanthopoulos, the court was concerned with different but connected costs issues, which were referred to in the judgment in relatively dramatic terms. First, consideration was given to when a legal services payment order (LSPO) application can and cannot properly include a claim for historic costs and why a party whose legal team have come off the record cannot successfully pursue a LSPO. Secondly, the case underlines the consequences of failing to keep to a previous LSPO budget and why courts should not allow further applications in such circumstances. Thirdly, the case highlights how a failure to comply with court rules and directions can amount to ‘forensic cheating’ and warns legal advisers that they could be reported to their regulatory bodies. Finally, the judgment comprehensively reviews the approach to be taken in relation to anonymity orders in financial cases and calls into question the current presumptions and, importantly, the existence of the ‘implied undertaking’ imposed on parties and others not to disclose details of financial remedy cases publicly, even where no anonymity order has been made. David Burles, MCIArb, barrister at 1GC Family Law and deputy district judge, examines the issues.
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