In an RTA case the claimant at trial failed to exceed a payment in, under Part 36 of CPR. His solicitors acted under a CFA providing for a success fee of 100 per cent. The Deputy District Judge and the Judge on appeal held that the court had no discretion to award a different success fee.

On appeal to the Court of Appeal the defendants contended that policy considerations led to the opposite conclusion and that a lesser success fee should have been awarded in light of the claimant’s rejection of the payment in. However the Court of Appeal held that the claimant’s solicitors were entitled to a 100 per cent success fee in the circumstances.

There was no discretion to award the claimant a success fee of less than 100 per cent. However, they added that it would be a matter for the Rules Committee of the Civil Justice Council whether to amend the rules to deal with the issue.

Lamont -v- Burton. Court of Appeal, 9 May 2007.

Highest PI damages assessment by an English court

In a case that resulted in the highest PI damages assessment by an English Court to date, over £9.5 million, the Judge held that the Damages Act 1996 Section 2 conferred a wide discretion upon Judges to make orders for periodical payments linked to an index or measure other than the RPI index where it was appropriate and fair to do so in all the circumstances of the case.

This follows on from the earlier decision of Flora -v- Wakom in 2006. The case covers numerous findings on many heads of claim in catastrophic personal injury cases and should therefore be read in detail by anyone dealing with cases of that nature.

Sarwar -v- Kamran Ali and the MIB. Lloyd Jones J, 25 May 2007, EWHC 1255 (QB).