Redwing Construction Limited –v- Charles Wishart [2011] EWHC 19 (TCC)

Posted on Monday, January 17th, 2011

C successfully applied to enforce an adjudication decision, having entered into a conditional fee agreement with a 100% success fee and at ATE policy with a premium of £8,480.00. No formal notice of the CFA had been given to D until 16 days after its inception and 15 days after the issue of proceedings. The Judge summarily assessed the base costs but reserved judgment on the additional liabilities. There was no good reason why notice had not been given in accordance with the rules, therefore no success fee was recoverable for the pre notice period. Viewed at the time the CFA was entered into, the risk of losing the case entirely was effectively nil although there was some risk that a portion of the award might be lost. The very fact C pursued a summary judgment application emphasised their belief in the strength of their case. In the circumstances, the appropriate uplift was 20%. There was no presumption that the insurance premium was reasonable, Kris Motor Spares –v- Fox Williams LLP considered. In the absence of evidence from C it had to be presumed that a wholly unrealistic assessment of risk was made to justify a premium of 42% of the sum insured. It was reasonable for D to pay only 20% of the insurance premium.

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