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CPR 46.5 – Litigants in Person & Recovery of Costs

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Who does CPR 46.5 Relate to?

CPR 46.5 relates to individuals who are not legally represented and therefore are classed as a Litigant in Person i.e. they do not have legal professionals (these must be qualified and authorised to conduct litigation, such as a Solicitor or CILEX) to provide legal services and therefore act alone in their case.

Litigant in person costs arise from the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR). CPR 46.5 (6) states that a Litigant in Person can include a corporation or company, a solicitor or barrister or a solicitor’s employee. In short, a person acting on their own or on behalf of their company, is likely to be seen as a Litigant in Person.

 

What About Litigant in Person Costs?

Litigants in Person (LIP) can make a claim for costs if a costs order is made in their favour (either by Court or acceptance of a Part 36 Offer) which is to be calculated in one of the following two ways:

  • An hourly rate if the LIP is able to prove financial loss (the rate which the party would have otherwise recovered while working)
  • Where the person is unable to prove actual financial loss , then a fixed hourly charge can apply to their costs. The current flat rate hourly charge is £19 per hour.

If for example a Litigant in Person was required to work on their case in hours where they would normally work and earn money, then that loss may be recovered, at the rate lost. To recover costs in line with their financial loss, the Litigant in Person must show that the work was undertaken when otherwise the person would have been working and also how much they would have earned should they have been working instead.

If the Litigant in Person is unable to show or evidence a financial loss, then the flat rate of £19 per hour will apply.

When a Litigant in Person is seeking to exceed the £19ph rate, then written evidence is required to be provided 24 hours before any hearing showing the financial loss sustained.

 

What Costs can be Recovered under CPR 46.5?

Where a Litigant in Person is awarded an order for costs, they may recover the following:

  • Costs for the work undertaken and disbursements – this relates to work or disbursements which any legal representative would have incurred. It is important to note that only time reasonably spent doing the work can be recovered as per CPR 46.5(3).
  • Payments reasonably made by the Litigant in Person in relation to the conduct of the said proceedings, such as the amount of costs incurred for postage of letters or copying of documents for example.
  • Costs of obtaining any expert assistance to assess the costs claimed (CPR 46.5 (3)).  For the avoidance of doubt, obtaining the input of a Costs Lawyer to draft a Bill of Costs falls under this category, and you can therefore recovery such costs as part of any Bill of Costs prepared.

In relation to (c), expert assistance mentioned under CPR 46.5 (3) is defined under PD 46 paragraph 3.1.

PD 46 3.1 states that expert assistance can be a barrister, fellow of CILEX, fellow of ACL (Association of Costs Lawyers) or a legal costs draftsman who is a member of an expert regulation body such as Academy of Excerpts or Expert Witness Institute.

 

Summary

Whilst this article is just a brief overview of Litigant in Person Costs under CPR 46.5, it is worth noting that the following will be considered by the Court when assessing an award for costs:

  • A rate between either the flat rate of £19 per hour or the actual loss sustained.
  • The time which was reasonably spent in doing work for the case, and consideration will be given as to how long a professional legal representative would have taken.
  • Allow either costs in full as assessed or discount the figure claimed.
  • Assess the disbursements and reasonableness of the same.

 

How Can ARC Costs Assist?

ARC Costs are a team of Costs Draftsman and Costs Lawyers who are members of the Association of Costs Lawyers. We can assist in quantifying your costs claim and ensuring the same is reasonable and well evidenced. We can advise on the likely costs assessment to be made by the Court based on the facts of your costs claim.

As stated above, in line with CPR 46.5 (3) and Practice Direction 46 paragraph 3.1, if you are successful in your claim for costs, you will be entitled to recover the fees which ARC Costs charge for their services.

It is advisable to instruct a costs expert such as ARC Costs for your costs claim as we can assist in preparing a detailed Bill of Costs on your behalf, negotiating with the third party on your costs, providing detailed legal replies to any Points of Dispute which the paying party may raise and providing assistance and representation at detailed assessment.

For further information on how ARC Costs can assist you in your costs claim, you may contact us on 01204 397302 or email one of our experts on info@arccosts.co.uk.

 

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Contact us today for your free, no obligation quotation. Our team are on hand to help.

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01204 397302

info@arccosts.co.uk

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