What happens when you lose is a question we are often asked?
Losing bad enough you don’t get any compensation …
But what if there were further sanctions on you?
What if you also had to paythe defendants legal costs as well?
Well don’t worry because we’ve thought of that. The court rules say that you don’t have to pay the defendants legal costs because of a quirky set of rules called QOCS.
What is Qocs?
Qualified One Way Costs Shifting applies to personal injury claims. Brought in with the changes to how personal injury claims are run in April 2013. The concept behind QOCS was to offer some of the same protection that Legal Aid offered where if the claimant is unsuccessful, they do not have to pay the legal costs of the successful defendant. But, if the claimant wins the defendant pays the claimant’s legal costs.
Its part of the costs rules – it basically means that a losing claimant doesn’t have to pay the winning defendants legal fees if they lose at trial. Or abandon the case before trial.
Please note however this is not a hard and fast rule it can be disapplied.
What ways can it be dissaplied?
- If The case is thrown out for an abuse of process or for want of a reasonable course of action.
- The claimant fails to beat the defendant’s Part 36 offer; however the defendant will only be able to recover costs not exceeding the level of the claimant’s damages.
- If The claim is ‘fundamentally dishonest’ on the balance of probabilities.
Would you still need to take out after the event insurance?
The short answer is ‘yes’. Because ATE (After the Event Policy) insurance covers the disbursements of the case, such as medical reports and barristers fees should your claim make it to court. If you fail to beat a Part 36 offer and you did not have an ATE in place, you would have to pay your opponent’s legal costs up to the value of your damages.