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Can a Litigant-in-Person claim costs for time and expenses?

If you don`t have a solicitor can you claim for costs?

Calculation of charges for time spent in preparing the case:

To determine the cost of time spent, the judge must determine the following:

1) What work was done and how much time did it take?

2) Was the work necessary?  If so, was an unreasonable amount of time spent doing the work compared with the time needed for a solicitor to do the same work?

3) The hourly rate for work is £19 unless other financial loss can be shown.

4) If the work was done by a solicitor, what would it have reasonably cost?

When a Litigant-in-Person intends to show a financial loss, he or she must provide the court with written evidence to support that claim, he or she should also supply a copy to the other party.

Calculation of disbursements

The Litigant-in-Person will be allowed reasonable disbursements (court fees,etc.) if the judge agrees, after considering the following:

a) Were the costs actually incurred?

b) Were they necessary?

c) Is the sum to be claimed reasonable?

If the judge does not accept that the costs were incurred or not necessary, the entire claim will be refused.

If the judge agrees the costs were incurred and rightly so, but the claim is unreasonable because of the amount being claimed, the judge will allow the claim at a reduced amount.

The total claim must not exceed 2/3 of what a solicitor would reasonably have charged for the same work; what the work should have reasonably cost is at the judge's discretion.


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(Updated: January 18, 2012)
The hourly rate for litigants in person changed from £9.25 to £18.00 from 1st October 2011.