Costs in disrepair claims: more good news

On 6th September the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) confirmed that it would be implementing fixed costs across the fast track and in most money claims up to the value of £25,000. 

There is no date for implementation at present, but the MoJ has said that it will work with the Civil Procedure Rule Committee to ensure the smooth delivery of the reforms. 

Under the proposals all fast-track cases will be placed into four bands of complexity, with Band 1 being the least complex cases and Band 4 being the most complex. The amount of fixed recoverable costs will depend on the stage reached. 

Tracked possession claims and housing disrepair are expected to fall within Band 3 unless they are particularly complex, where they will fall within Band 4.  

In the event a Part 36 offer is beaten, the MoJ has said an uplift of 35% should be applied to fixed costs, and unreasonable behaviour will be penalised by a 50% uplift. There will also be a 25% uplift for each additional Claimant. 

The proposals for costs from the report are set out in this table and it is expected they will only be adjusted to reflect inflation


This is good news, as it will create greater certainty over the likely costs of dealing with a disrepair claim and will likely discourage Claimant law firms from taking on weak cases.   

It may see some firms reducing the number of claims they take on, or stopping practicing in that area completely. There is however a risk that Claimant firms may issue claims prematurely to try to inflate costs which highlights the need to get repairs completed as quickly as possible to reduce this risk. 

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