Costs budgeting 2017

On 16th October 2017 I am speaking at the Law Society Commercial Litigation Conference in Chancery Lane on the subject of costs budgeting.

Full details of the conference can be found here:

I understand that there are still a few places left, but for those who cannot attend the conference, I have placed a copy of the paper that I am delivering here:

Costs Budgeting A presentation for the Law Society PDF

I am now undertaking a significant number of detailed assessments, both for paying and receiving parties, in budgeted cases where a lot of new issues are being thrown up about the budgeting regime. In the next couple of posts on this blog, I shall consider those further.


Winter has come

The clouds closed in today, the temperature plunged and the heavens opened. A sure sign that summer has effectively come to an end and autumn has begun.

I have returned from various trips to a mountain of work, and a hefty backlog of topics to write about in relation to matters of costs and litigation funding.

On the plus side, season 7 of Game of Thrones is now available to buy, and an artisan bake house has opened just round the corner from chambers, with a tempting array of sourdough creations (particularly the cinnamon whirls) which pair perfectly with 11am coffee. Here it is:

In the next few blog entries I shall be looking at a number of issues, including the ongoing war between the insurance industry and the credit hire companies over the scope of the non party costs jurisdiction, some recent group actions, successful and unsuccessful and the use of litigation funding made in them and also consider the new Jackson Report, not least because I am giving a seminar on it next month. In truth, it is a curious document, which repays careful attention.

In the meantime, for those cake lovers amongst my readership, here are some of Tough Mary’s finest creations:


A Conversation on Costs: The Summer Tour

Each year I undertake a number of seminars entitled A Conversation on Costs, usually at the offices of solicitors who instruct me, or would like to instruct me. It is a chance, in an informal question and answer session to discuss some of the burning issues of the day in costs and litigation funding.

There are still a few slots on my summer tour available. If you would be interested in me coming to your firm by all means pick up the phone for a chat (0115) 947 2581 or email on

On another note I would be interested in developing this website: both in terms of its appearance and content and would welcome some feedback.

For some time I have been pondering refreshing the design, though I have a great fondness for this blog theme. Any suggestions for further topics to include in the content will be read with interest if you care to send them to me at

At the current time an average of 1500 people a week visit this blog according to my measurements looking for a wide variety of information and brought here by various search terms entered into Google.

A small percentage of the searches which bring the reader to my website are along the lines of  “What happens if I don’t pay my solicitor?”.

The answer to the latter can only sensibly be “Bad things. Very bad things can happen indeed.”

Seminars and lectures

Each year, I give a number of seminars to the profession.

I speak at the Ropewalk Chambers Personal Injury conference in March of each year, dealing with matters particularly pertinent to my colleagues who practise in that field.

I also speak from time to time to the ACL, usually in London.

I also each year undertake a series of talks entitled “A conversation on costs”, where I come to solicitors/lawyers offices to undertake a discursive and interactive seminar on current issues in costs, or indeed any matters of concern in relation to costs and litigation funding.

Another series of talks entitled “A question time on costs” involves me assembling a panel of barristers with an interest in costs, to answer questions submitted in advance and on the day, on any issue pertinent to costs and litigation funding. In 2016, events were held both in Manchester and in chambers in Nottingham.

I have also drafted a number of seminars, which for a reasonable fee plus travelling expenses I can deliver to your firm.

Titles in the series so far include “Solicitors and retainers”, “Costs for commercial lawyers” and “Solicitor-own client assessments: a survival guide”.

My most recent lecture, delivered in London this month, was “Litigation funding in international arbitrations after Essar v Norscot“.