When engaged in court litigation there are many strategies that can be deployed to try and achieve resolution at an early stage. For example one tool that can be used is a Part 36 offer. This is where (say) the Claimant makes an offer for a fixed sum. If that offer is not accepted and the Claimant achieves an award greater than the offer at trial, they can ask for costs, interest and compensation etc all based upon the opponent’s refusal to accept a reasonable offer at an early stage.
In the recent case of Purrunsing v A’Court&Co (A Firm) (1st July 2016) the Claimant who had made a Part 36 offer argued that at trial he had achieved a result better than the Part 36 offer, which meant that he could claim a higher rate of costs. The Court observed however that the Claimant, in making the comparison of what had been offered, to what had been awarded, was including interest to Trial. The Judge found that when considering whether a Part 36 offer had been beaten, interest beyond when the offer was made should be excluded to ensure that the parties were considering like-for-like. In doing so the Court found that the Part 36 offer had not been bettered and enhanced cost provisions should not apply.
It is important that your legal advisor has knowledge of both the rules of court, and how the court are applying those rules, in order that you can achieve the most in the litigation that you pursue or defend. Our Litigators not only have detailed knowledge of the Rules, but importantly keep abreast of decisions of court and any changes in the Rules. This enables them to advise and serve their clients very well, and get great results.
If you have a claim, whether as Claimant or Defendant, which you wish to discuss, please do call our Dispute Resolution Team for an initial, free exploratory discussion. Our dispute lawyers are good at both listening and guiding.