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Three recent English High Court cases provide guidance on the question of how to determine the amount of the recoverable costs, and emphasize the importance of the costs budgets filed at the initial stages of litigation.
The general rule, with some exceptions, in English litigation is that the unsuccessful party will be ordered to pay the legal costs of the successful party. It is a valued feature of English litigation, embodying the principle that the vindicated party should be fully compensated and discouraging poor cases being pursued.
Unlike in the U.S., the term ‘‘costs’’ in English litigation includes lawyers’ fees. However, the system is not perfect, potentially discouraging some parties from bringing or defending a claim for fear of a large costs bill should they not succeed.
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