The recent significant hike in Court fees has increased the difficulties for claimants in funding litigation from the outset. As a result, claims have been issued and the initial fee paid on the basis of a value which is later increased following receipt of an interim payment or litigation funding. This approach has been found by the High Court to be an abuse of process in a recent professional negligence action based on advice given on buy-to-let properties. The Judge stopped short of striking out all of the claims in the action on the basis of the abuse of process. He was, however, content to grant summary judgment against claims where the limitation period had expired after issue but before the correct fee had been paid. The next claimant may not escape so lightly.
The High Court has found a Newcastle law firm’s conduct an abuse of process after it repeatedly failed to pay the proper court fees when it issued claims