Motor Industry - Legal Articles
Part 36 offers (referring to the rule number in the Court Procedural Rules (CPR)) is a device incorporated into the Court rules to facilitate the settlement of claims without going to trial. Such offers can be made by Claimants or Defendants.
In general terms if a party fails to beat a part 36 offer that has been made when it comes to trial , then it risks liability for more in interest and costs on a judgment than if no offer had been put forward.
After the 6 April this year a new updated Part 36 rule comes into force but largely the rule remains intact.
The areas of main change include:-
- Appeals Rule (36.4) has been introduced to deal with appeals. Part 36 offers can now be made in appeals and these offers will only apply to the appeal.
- Improved offers, Rule 39(5) states that if an improved offer is made this will be treated as an entirely new offer rather than a withdrawal of the old one.
- Rule 36.17(5)(e) deals with the situation where high Claimant offers are made , typically just slightly lower than the actual claim figure, and says the Court can now take into consideration whether the offer was a genuine attempt to settle the case.
- Where a party failed to file a costs budget in time previously they could be penalised by the Court to just receiving court fees in respect of their legal costs. This could be a drastic penalty particularly on a large case involving thousands in legal costs. Under rule 36.23 a party can now obtain half its assessed costs.