||All England Reporter
|| All ER (D) 359 (Dec)
||Queen's Bench Division
Morland J sitting with assessors
||Lord Brennan QC and Jeremy Morgan (instructed by Irwin Mitchell) for the claimants.
||Charles Haddon-Cave QC (instructed by Field Fisher Waterhouse) for the defendant.
||20 December 2002
Costs - Interim assessment - Proportionality - Group litigation - Principles to be applied.
In almost all group litigation cases there should be no need for any detailed assessment of costs until the conclusion of that litigation. Solicitors for claimants are fully entitled to an adequate cash flow from the defendants once the general issue of liability has been admitted or determined in the claimants' favour, similarly on determination of generic issues in the claimants' favour and on the assessment or settlement of awards of damages to individual or batches of claimants. It is to be hoped that in most cases defendants' solicitors would agree to pay at various stages in the group litigation a realistic interim amount on account of a final detailed assessment of costs if necessary. If agreement could not be reached as to interim payment of costs, it should be dealt with cheaply and shortly by the nominated trial judge who would be familiar with the general issues in the case.
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