Local Lawyers Get To Grips With Industry Wide Changes

Claimant law specialists from across the region are to come together later this month to take part in an event designed to give insight into how to tackle a series of controversial changes to the way costs are calculated and approved throughout the duration of a case.

The interactive session is to be hosted by East Anglia-based industry experts Partners In Costs and will feature guest speaker Professor Dominic Regan – a qualified solicitor and advisor to a number of Government departments, as well as Lord Justice Jackson, on the recent costs budgeting and management reform.

Taking place in partnership with local Barristers Chamber 9 Gough Square, the seminar at The Assembly House in Norwich on 23rd November will cover key issues affecting the industry today including everything from issues regarding proportionality of costs, through to the New Part 36.

A number of local Solicitors are already signed up to attend, many of whom have expressed concern about the potential ‘squeeze’ that changes introduced since a review of the legal services industry – now known as the Jackson Reforms – could have on the ability to process a case profitably.

This is the latest in a series of events being hosted by the firm, with expert costs lawyer and team leader of the Norwich-based team Samantha Risebrow saying the move was a ‘direct response to  demands from claimant lawyers operating across East Anglia’.

Risebrow said: “The legal services industry underwent a massive overhaul a few years ago. A review took place and changes were made that made those operating across the sector take a step back and reassess how things were being done.

“One example was the introduction of proportionality of costs.  The rules were a new procedural code that enabled the court to deal with cases justly and at proportionate cost and is still a matter of discussion in cases across the board today.

“On paper, the changes in the industry sound ideal and straightforward. The reality, though, is somewhat different.

“After all, the Costs Budgeting exercise is not one to be taken lightly. Set a Costs Budget too low and limit recoverability. Set a Costs Budget in such a way that it appears too high and it will be found to be disproportionate and is bound to find short shrift with the Court. With proper insight a balancing act is easily achieved.”

From its base on Duke Street the team of leading costs law experts is best known for offering a unique, flexible ‘in-house’ service, in which they work out of the offices of clients during a case to help drive efficiencies and keep down costs.

Samantha said: “We wanted to host this seminar in partnership with 9 Gough Square as we have had feedback from firms in the region in need of a little guidance, support and insight into the changes and how it affects them.”

With offices in Manchester, Doncaster, Norwich and London, as well as teams operating out of the South West, the Midlands, North East and the South East, PIC now employs over 100 members of staff; including more than 70 professional Solicitors, Cost lawyers and Cost consultants specialising in Civil Litigation claims including personal injury ranging from catastrophic injury to clinical negligence and court of protection matters, as well as professional negligence and commercial cases.