Order for Costs: What is a Costs Order?

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An order for costs can be made by the Court at a final hearing or interim hearing following an application.  This will usually be made in the terms that the losing party do pay the successful party’s costs, to be assessed, or in a summarily assessed amount.

If a matter is not determined at a final hearing however, then there are certain means of concluding litigation that gives rise to a deemed costs order under CPR 44.9.  These are an automatic entitlement to costs, which are governed by law/provided for by statute.  Common examples of this including the acceptance of a Part 36 Offers, or the filing of a Notice of Discontinuance.

Considerations When Making an Order for Costs

When the Court is making an Order for costs, the Court can exercise its discretion and take into account a number of factors when determining to what extent costs are recoverable, and the amount of any costs that may be permitted. The general rule is to order the losing party to pay for the successful party’s costs however, this may depend upon the extent of success (and if parts of the claim have failed), and the reasonableness and proportionality of the costs claimed.

If costs are assessed on the day (at the end of an application or single-day Trial), this is referred to as summary assessment.  If assessment on the day is not possible, or the matter is a complex Multi-Track (or multi-day matter) then an order is likely to be made for detailed assessment of costs.

Where a civil claim has been allocated to the Multi-Track, a Costs Budget will be required to be submitted to determine the amount of costs to be allowed for the litigation, and this will be referred to in the making of any Order for costs, particularly in relation to any provision for an interim payment to be made on account of costs.

It is important for a Statement of Costs to be filed to the Court before any final hearing is due to take place. This enables the Court to form a preliminary view of costs in order to make an appropriate summary assessment order, or to make provision for a suitable payment on account. 

Following summary or detailed assessment, any Order for costs will need to be paid within 14 days. However, if the terms of the order allow for more time, then this will be amount of time allowed for payment to be made.

If no Order for costs is made, or an Order is silent as to costs and no automatic provisions apply, then no party is entitled to costs. It is important to always discuss costs at the hearing so that you can ensure that the Judge comments upon costs or makes an appropriate assessment Order for the same.


How Can ARC Costs Assist?

ARC Costs are a team of specialist Costs Draftsmen and Costs Lawyers who can assist in your costs queries. We hold extensive experience in dealing with all areas of costs disputes, and can assist throughout the litigation process, whether it be providing initial retainer advice, to providing representation at detailed assessment.

If you have received an Order for costs, or believe you have a deemed Order, we can assist in preparing a Bill of Costs in cases where detailed assessment applies.  We also hold particular expertise in assisting with fixed costs disputes under CPR 45 for your legal costs and disbursements.

We regularly undertake negotiations on behalf of paying and receiving parties, to ensure the best result is achieved, which often requires the settling of Points of Dispute or Points of Reply.

As Costs Lawyers we can assist and represent you in detailed assessment proceedings, and as an independent party, we often facilitate bringing a fresh set of eyes to litigation and assist in reaching an amicable resolution to matters.

If you require our assistance, please email us on info@arccosts.co.uk or call one of our costs experts on 01204 397302 to find out if we can assist.

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