APIL and Law Society Respond to Fixed Recoverable Costs Extension

fixed recoverable costs extension

Fixed recoverable costs will be extended in England and Wales in response to the consultation on extending fixed recoverable costs in civil cases, implementing Sir Rupert Jackson’s proposals.

The Lord Chancellor announced that fixed recoverable costs (FRC regime) are to be extended to all cases in the fast track (valued up to £25,000) and, via a new regime, to ‘less complex’ claims valued between £25,000 and £100,000 (intermediate cases).

Cases will be ranked into complexity bands, with the fast track expanded to include ‘intermediate’ track cases, and Judges will be asked to exercise their discretion to ensure that these are properly allocated.

The announcement to extend fixed recoverable legal costs has been met by opposition from a number of groups including the Law Society and APIL.

Opposition to the fixed recoverable costs extension

The Law Society and the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) have responded negatively to the plans to extend the use of fixed recoverable costs. Stephanie Boyce, President of the Law Society has urged the government to reconsider their plans to extend the use of fixed costs in civil cases as it would reduce access to justice for many vulnerable claimants.

Boyce stated the following in response to the extension:-

“If the government caps the amount of reasonable costs a claimant can recover then – without safeguards – a deep-pocketed and unscrupulous party could force their opponent to run up legal bills they’ll never recover.

“This could seriously damage the justice system, leaving claimants unable to obtain effective remedy or vindicated defendants out of pocket through no fault of their own.”

She further stated that the legal system had been “reshaped” by the coronavirus pandemic, as well as the Court reform programme amongst a number of other changes since Lord Justice Jackson’s 2017 report, on which the new changes are based.

Claire Green from APIL held a similar view and questioned whether the fixed costs extension provides “genuine access to justice and allow a party to conduct litigation effectively, or do they only work for the privileged few who can afford to pay for litigation irrespective of what they recover from an opponent?”

Matthew Scott from the Association of Consumer Support quoted Lord Justice Jackson by stating:-

“If the costs are too high, people cannot afford lawyers. If the costs are too low, there will not be any lawyers doing the work.”

Scott also stated that he was not surprised the the Government had decided to implement the extension.

 

How can R&R Solutions assist?

If your business has been affected by the fixed costs extension and you wish to discuss your options, please do not hesitate to contact us at R&R Solutions for a confidential chat.

We offer a positive solution to any law firm by helping them exit any legal market whilst remaining solvent, maintaining cash flow, and ensuring they get the most out of their files.

We will provide you with all the advice and support you need, and we guarantee 100% confidentiality for all clients. If you would like to find out more about R&R Solution’s process, feel free to get in touch today via email (david.johnstone@r-rsolutions.co.uk), telephone (0845 056 1258) or contact Sally Dunscombe at sally.dunscombe@r-rsolutions.co.uk or 07774 205 870.

Retirement Project - Grant Saw Solicitors LLP

“With our claimant personal injury partner retiring in we decided the time was right to step back from PI work. We reviewed the market options, were disappointed at the discounts being applied by potential buyers of the WIP and were referred to R&R’s offering the full realisation of WIP over time. It has effectively delivered what it “said on the tin” - over the project period we have seen a steady flow of receipts being accounted for to us, allowing us to recover the full value we had built up in the files."

- Mike Clary, Partner

Restructuring Project - Copley Clark

“Having taken a strategic decision to be completely step out of the claimant personal injury sector we were R&R’s first client to step back on a phased basis. R&R customised their offering specifically for us and I am happy to say it has worked a treat. We could focus our own resource on matters where we had a possibility of concluding within our timetable and utilised R&R’s panel firms to continue to work on other matters. Not only have their services allowed us to retain the value we had built in the files, the nature of the services ensured we were able to offer our clients the option of moving to firms with the skill sets required to best service their specific needs. For firms considering restructuring we would have no hesitation recommending R&R Solutions."

- Malcolm Lawrence, Partner

Restructuring Project - Farley Dwek Solicitors

" We had an extremely positive experience working with Recovery First after making the strategic decision to move away from an area of law and retune our business model. The process was very straightforward, and we were really pleased with the overall outcome. We would highly recommend the Recovery First model as a practical solution to any law firm wishing to exit a specific sector.” 

Jonathan Dwek, Director

Ticking all the boxes for a quick, clean, confident exit from legal markets due to restructuring or retirement.

Contact us now in the strictest confidence

Sally Dunscombe:

07774 205 870

sally.dunscombe@r-rsolutions.co.uk

David Johnstone:

07887 796 989

david.johnstone@r-rsolutions.co.uk

Manchester Address

106 Kennedy Building

Murray Street

Manchester

M4 6HS

Kent Address

PO Box 632

Chatham

Kent

ME4 9FL