Khans Solicitor (A Firm) v Chifuntwe and Another: CA 8 May 2013

C instructed the claimants to bring proceedings. They compromised those proceedings, the defendant agreeing to pay C’s costs. A bill was submitted but before it was paid C withdrew his instructions from his solicitors and accepted the defendant’s offer of andpound;6,000 in settlement of his costs, requiring that the money be paid directly to him. His solicitors had written to the defendant stating that they believed that C was attempting to avoid payment of costs properly due to them and putting the defendant on notice of their claim. The money was nevertheless paid directly to C who then disappeared. The solicitors issued proceedings under CPR Part 8, claiming a declaration that the compromise was not valid and either a charge or a lien upon the unpaid and as yet unassessed costs.
Held: The compromise was valid but that since the defendant had been on notice as to the costs due to the solicitors when it paid C, that payment was not a good discharge of the solicitors’ claim and must be paid again.
The court may intervene to protect a claim by a solicitor on funds recovered by a client where (a) the paying party appeared to have colluding with the client to cheat the solicitor of his fees, or (b) the paying party was on notice that the other party’s solicitor had a claim on the funds for outstanding fees.
Rix, Ryder, Sedley LJJ
[2013] EWCA Civ 481, [2013] WLR(D) 167, [2013] 4 All ER 367, [2013] PNLR 29, [2013] 4 Costs LR 564, [2014] 1 WLR 1185
Bailii, WLRD
England and Wales
Appeal fromKhans Solicitors v Chifuntwe and Another SCCO 17-Feb-2012
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See AlsoKhans Solicitors v Chifuntwe and Another QBD 24-Jul-2012
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Cited by:
CitedGavin Edmondson Solicitors Ltd v Haven Insurance Company Ltd CA 2-Dec-2015
Appeal by Edmondson against an Order dismissing Edmondson’s claim against Haven in respect of Haven’s conduct in settling on an inclusive basis personal injury claims directly with six clients of Edmondson with whom Edmondson had concluded . .
ApprovedGavin Edmondson Solicitors Ltd v Haven Insurance Company Ltd SC 18-Apr-2018
The court was asked as to use of the solicitor’s equitable lien, whereby equity provided security for the recovery by solicitors of their agreed charges for the successful conduct of litigation, out of the fruits of that litigation. It is a . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 18 July 2021; Ref: scu.503465