Case details

Gavin Edmondson Solicitors Limited (Respondent/Cross-Appellant) v Haven Insurance Company Limited (Appellant/Cross-Respondent)

Case ID: UKSC 2016/0010

Case summary

Issue(s)

Whether the Court of Appeal erred in allowing the respondent solicitors firm’s claim for equitable interference against the appellant insurer to recover its costs under conditional fee agreements after the appellant had compromised the underlying claims directly with the respondent’s clients on terms which did not provide for the payment of the respondent’s costs.

Facts

Six individuals were involved in road traffic accidents involving vehicles insured by the appellant insurance company. They all entered into CFAs with the respondent solicitors firm, which notified the claims via the online claims portal (in accordance with the pre-action protocol for road traffic accidents). Each claim was acknowledged by the appellant, which then made offers to compromise the claims on an inclusive basis. All of the individuals eventually accepted these offers and cancelled their CFAs with the respondent firm.

The respondent claimed against the appellant for its fixed costs which it might have recovered had the claims been settled in accordance with the pre-action protocol. The claim was dismissed at first instance, but the Court of Appeal allowed the firm’s appeal in respect of its claim based on equitable interference.

Judgment appealed

[2015] EWCA Civ 1230

Parties

Appellant(s)

Haven Insurance Company Limited

Respondent(s)

Gavin Edmondson Solicitors Limited

Appeal

Justices

Lady Hale, Lord Kerr, Lord Wilson, Lord Sumption, Lord Briggs

Hearing start date

05 Feb 2018

Hearing finish date

06 Feb 2018