Re A Barrister (Wasted Costs Order); Re A (No 1 of 1991): CA 1992

The section provided that the Court could order a legal practitioner to pay ‘wasted costs’, which were defined as costs incurred by a party ‘as a result of any improper, unreasonable or negligent act or omission on the part of any representative’. The barrister appealed against the order made.
Held: The court adopted the practice of not naming barristers subject to applications for wasted costs orders.
The Court recommended a three-stage test or approach when contemplating an order under s.19A. Macpherson J said: ‘A three stage test or approach is recommended when a wasted costs order is contemplated.
(i) Has there been an improper, unreasonable or negligent act or omission?
(ii) As a result have any costs been incurred by a party?
(iii) If the answers to (i) and (ii) are ‘Yes,’ should the court exercise its discretion to disallow or order the representative to meet the whole or any part of the relevant costs, and if so what specific sum is involved?’
. . And ‘There is a clear need for any judge or court intending to exercise the wasted costs jurisdiction to formulate carefully and concisely the complaint and ground upon which such an order may be sought. These measures are draconian, and, as in contempt proceedings, the grounds must be clear and particular.’

Macpherson J
[1993] QB 293, [1992] 3 All ER 429, [1992] 3 WLR 662, (1992) 95 Cr App R 288
rosecution of Offences Act 1985 19A
Cited by:
CitedRegina v Legal Aid Board ex parte Kaim Todner (a Firm of Solicitors) CA 10-Jun-1998
Limitation on Making of Anonymity Orders
A firm of solicitors sought an order for anonymity in their proceedings against the LAB, saying that being named would damage their interests irrespective of the outcome.
Held: The legal professions have no special part in the law as a party . .
CitedRidehalgh v Horsefield; Allen v Unigate Dairies Ltd CA 26-Jan-1994
Guidance for Wasted Costs Orders
Guidance was given on the circumstances required for the making of wasted costs orders against legal advisers. A judge invited to make an order arising out of an advocate’s conduct of court proceedings must make full allowance for the fact that an . .
CitedReeves and Co, Solicitors, Regina v CACD 24-Mar-2011
The solicitors appealed against a wasted costs order. On the morning of the trial, they had produced further evidence leading to the collapse of the trial.
Held: The appeal succeeded. The solicitors had not been given notice of the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Legal Professions, Criminal Practice

Updated: 19 November 2021; Ref: scu.200455