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Henry ruling ‘does not undermine Jackson’

In Henry, proceedings developed in a way which no-one could have predicted

8 February 2013

The recent Court of Appeal decision in the Sylvia Henry case has been criticised, erroneously but somewhat predictably, by the insurance industry for undermining Jackson and failing to uphold costs budgeting. The truth is it did neither.

My firm acted for the claimant in both the libel action against The Sun and the appeal against the decision of the Senior Costs Judge with regard to the leapfrog appeal to the Court of Appeal on the issue of whether there was “good reason to depart from the original budget”.

In its ruling the Court of Appeal has made clear that costs management is the responsibility of all parties to the action including the court. It found that in the somewhat unusual circumstances of this case, the proceedings had developed in a way simply not foreseen when the original budget had been approved some nine months before settlement. Apart from the initial approva...

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