The Jackson reforms - what do they mean for businesses?
On 1 April 2013 radical reforms recommended by Lord Justice Jackson will come into force, affecting the commercial and costs implications for any business involved in litigation.
We highlight the more significant changes for commercial organisations.
In a previous article we have looked at refusal to mediate and here, again, the question of costs sanctions following a refusal to mediate has come before the court in the case of ADS Aerospace Limited v EMS Global Tracking Limited .
Part 36 of the civil procedure rules was designed to encourage settlement by introducing costs and interest sanctions when unsuccessful parties fail to beat offers made by their opponents. The sanctions apply in relevant cases unless the court considers it is unjust for them to do so.
The recent case of Gladman Commercial Properties (GCP) v Fisher Hargreaves Proctor and others (FHP) delivered in January 2013 serves as a useful reminder to both lawyers and surveyors of the difficulties they can encounter in their professional practices, and the need for a claimant to take particular care when considering a claim for damages against one or more of a number of potential defendants.
Should a breach of trust end a commercial agency agreement?
Under Regulation 3 of the Commercial Agents Council Directive Regulations 1993 (“the Regulations”) commercial agents owe fiduciary duties to their principals, including a duty to act dutifully and in good faith.
Another case on the extent of a solicitor’s retainer highlights the need for clients to carefully consider what it is their solicitors have been asked to do. Clients should not assume that a new instruction carries an implied brief that the solicitor should automatically review old advice and old drafting on work that may have since become outdated because of legislative changes and development in the law.
The Court of Appeal has given a claimant another chance to prove its claim for professional negligence by ordering a retrial after warning that the trial judge was wrong to find that the solicitors were not in breach of duty after hearing just the claimant’s evidence at the initial trial.
The Court of Appeal has set the bar high with respect to the duties that surveyors owe to their clients – even when they believe that their retainer has been terminated due to non payment of a bill. This bar could lead to more professional negligence claims against surveyors and other professionals.