Nokes v Heart of England Foundation NHS Trust  EWHC B6 (Costs) (29 May 2015)
This was a clinical negligence claim where the Claimant sought to recover the cost of a post-LASPO ATE Temple Insurance Premium in the sum of £5,680 plus IPT which had been taken out to cover the costs of experts reports for her claim.
On provisional assessment, costs were awarded in the sum of £19,228.12 with the ATE policy being allowed in full. All other costs were agreed as provisionally assessed but Master Leonard was to review the provisional assessment in respect of the ATE premium sum awarded on its own.
The Defendant argued that the policy was not fully compliant with the statutory requirements and was unreasonable in amount and disproportionate. However, Master Leonard disagreed and found that the policy was fully compliant. With regards to proportionality, the Defendant relied on the cases of Kelly v Black Horse and Redwing Construction Ltd v Wishart but after considering the Claimant’s evidence, it was determined that there was no basis for relying on these cases for post LASPO insurance premiums. Master Leonard also concluded that the available evidence did not furnish any basis for the conclusion that the premium was unreasonable in amount. From the options that were available to her at the relevant time, the Claimant had made a reasonable choice of ATE policy and the insurers offered a compliant and competitive product. The premium was recoverable in full.