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UK Civil Litigation Review

by Geoff Sharp
May 2009

From the blog mediator blah...blah...

Geoff Sharp

UK's Lord Justice Jackson published his Preliminary Civil Litigation Cost Review last Friday.

I don't know the politics of this well enough to speculate whether this might be another Lord Woolf moment but given that any rethink of how litigation might work better normally impacts in some way on our world of mediating litigated cases, this may be worth a read (at 1000 pages!).

For instance, when NZ courts tweaked costs so 'user pays', parties could get a day's mediation for the same price as it cost them to get their case in the hearing ready queue, making for a very easy economic decision and an increase in usage of mediation.

The report includes;
>The basic facts – how much civil litigation there is, and what charges are made
>How civil litigation is or could be funded – legal aid, before or after-the-event insurance, third party funding, conditional fee agreements (no-win, no fee), contingency fees
>Fixed costs – assessing the present regime
>Personal injuries litigation
>Controlling the costs of litigation – case management, cost capping, recoverability of success fees
>Regimes where there is no cost shifting – small claims, employment tribunals;
>The assessment of costs by the court
>Review of costs systems in other countries.

Commentary on the report here


Geoff Sharp is a Commercial Mediator from Wellington, New Zealand. Geoff works in the Asia Pacific region, including New Zealand, Malaysia, Thailand and Pacific Islands. He is a mediator resolving business problems. He is a fellow of the International Academy of Mediators and mediates complex and hotly debated litigation covering a wide range of subject matter from insurance disputes to historic sexual abuse claims.

Geoff is author of the award winning blog mediator blah...blah... a mediation blog experiment in reflective practice and the Mediation vBlog Project, a kind of mediation genome project by video blog.

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Additional articles by Geoff Sharp