PROPORTIONALITY BITES AGAIN – May & May v Wavell Group PLC & Bizarri [2016] EWHC B16 (Costs)

PROPORTIONALITY BITES AGAIN Lest anyone thought that the decision of the Senior Costs Judge, Master Gordon-Saker, in BNM v MGN (see our blog here) was just an isolated decision, they had better think again. In another case proceeding in the Senior Courts Costs Office, this time before Master Rowley, even more swingeing reductions have been made to a bill of costs on the grounds of proportionality. In the case of May & May v Wavell Group PLC & Bizarri [2016] EWHC B16 (Costs), Master Rowley was considering a bill seeking just over £208,000. When undertaking a line by line assessment on a reasonableness basis, he reduced this to £99,655.74. However, having considered the issue of proportionalit


SENIOR COSTS JUDGE SLASHES “REASONABLY ASSESSED” BILL BY HALF ON GROUNDS OF PROPORTIONALITY In a decision destined to send shockwaves through the profession, the Senior Costs Judge, Master Gordon-Saker has applied his interpretation of the meaning of the new proportionality rules to dramatic effect. In BNM v MGN Ltd [2016] EWHC B13 (costs) he undertook an assessment of a bill claiming £241,817 and over 2 days on a “line by line” assessment reduced that on the grounds of reasonableness to £167,389.45. The matter was then adjourned to a fresh hearing date for the question of proportionality to be determined. At the conclusion of that hearing, the allowed costs had been reduced to £84,855.80. H

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