The defendant complained that the agreement under which the claimant’s solicitors had continued to act on his behalf, despite any realistic prospect of him ever being able to pay their costs, was a sham, and requested a full hearing to determine whether he would be able to pay those costs.
Held: The solicitors were entitled to continue to act. The material submitted did not undermine the agreement. Such an agreement did not become champertous because of the impecuniosity of the claimant. The importance of champerty and maintenance had been much reduced by the 1999 Act. Satellite litigation about costs is a blot on the civil justice system, and costs Judges should prevent such proceedings from being protracted by allegations without substance.
Phillips of Worth Matravers MR, Mance, Latham LJJ
Times 06-Dec-2002, Gazette 23-Jan-2003,  1 Costs LR 111,  EWCA Civ 1739,  All ER (D) 442
Access to Justice Act 1999
England and Wales
Cited – Hazlett v Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council QBD 2-Dec-1999
The need for a party claiming his costs to give evidence to prove his entitlement to costs rather than relying on the presumption in his favour, will not arise if the defendant simply puts the complainant to proof of his entitlement to costs. The . .
These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 January 2021; Ref: scu.178354