Steven Turner

Called 1993

A hard-working, approachable counsel who's a good team player.

Chambers & Partners 2022 (Motor Insurance Fraud - All circuits)

About

Steven is the Head of the Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Team.

He has over 25 years’ experience of dealing with multi-track personal injury, credit hire, costs, counter-fraud, consumer credit and general contractual disputes.

Steven excels in all areas but has particularly made his mark in credit hire, where he has been involved in most of the leading cases over the past 20 years. It is no exaggeration to say that arguments developed and promoted by Steven have well and truly shaped this area of the law.

In personal injury and costs work, Steven represents both Claimants and Defendants and will accept suitable cases on a no-win, no-fee basis.

The Legal 500 describes Steven as the ‘best in the northeast on costs and procedural issues’ and the Chambers & Partners Guide rates him as a Top Tier practitioner, praising his ‘intelligence and encyclopaedic knowledge of the law’.

As well as providing sound and commercially sensible advice at the individual case level, Steven also has extensive experience of advising in relation to broader strategic issues. He is regularly instructed to provide high-level advice and guidance to insurers and other commercial organisations who wish to improve their procedures or market performance in relation to a particular type of claim.

Steven has twice been short-listed as a finalist for Lawyer of the Year at the Northern Law Awards and many of his cases such as Dimond v Lovell, Stevens v Equity, McBride v UK Insurance have made national headlines over the years.

Steven has secured victories at all court levels, with particular success over the years in Court of Appeal test-case litigation.

Steven travels nationwide for hearings and conferences, is adept at working remotely and is direct access qualified.

Areas of Expertise

Accolades

The following are typical examples of the sort of sports law cases Steven has been involved with:

• Steven represented a household name former England cricket captain in a contractual dispute with a national tabloid newspaper.
• Steven defended a former Premier League and England international football player (now a TV personality) who was sued by someone allegedly injured after a prank went wrong.
• Steven represented a current Premier League and international football player in relation to a road accident involving suspected phantom passenger claims.
• Steven represented the Trinidadian international goalkeeper in a dispute with his agent over unpaid agency fees and ‘bungs’.
• Steven represented a household name former world darts champion in a contractual dispute arising out of his ownership of a public house.
• Steven represented a Great Britain rugby league international in a dispute with his insurers after his career was ended by injury.
• Steven represented a Super League rugby club in a contractual dispute with a former player.
• Steven represented a football league club in a dispute over the cost of match day policing.
• Steven represented a director of a football league club who was pursued personally for the debts of his club after it entered administration.

Steven has over 25 years’ experience of tackling fraudulent claims.

He is ranked as a leading counter-fraud practitioner by Chambers & Partners Guide, which describes him as:

“…An experienced junior admired for the strength of his motor insurance fraud practice. He brings impressive expertise to credit hire cases and exaggerated injury claims, and offers insurers robust advice on how to effectively combat fraud rings…”

“…Strengths: “He is exemplary. What he doesn’t know about credit hire cases isn’t worth knowing.” “A very competent and robust individual who is well liked by the judiciary…”

Steven is used to dealing with complex, large scale fraud cases, with high volumes of complex documentation. Telematics is a particular speciality.

Steven can assist at all stages of a fraud case, from providing oral or written advice (at the individual case or wider strategic level), to pleading a robust and powerful Defence to, finally, providing strong and stunningly effective representation at trial.

Steven’s instructions come predominantly from insurers, but Steven has on occasion advised Claimant firms on how best to minimise their own exposure to fraudulent claims.

Steven is based in Leeds but travels nationwide for hearings, conferences and settlement meetings. He welcomes instructions on a direct access or licenced access basis.

It is no exaggeration to say that Steven is one of the UK’s leading practitioners in this area of the law. He has been involved in numerous ground-breaking cases over the years. Examples are:

  • Dimond v Lovell [2002] 1 AC 384
  • Burdis v Livsey [2003] QB 36
  • Zurich v Umerji [2014] EWCA Civ 357
  • Stevens v Equity Syndicate Management Ltd. [2015] 4 All ER 458
  • McBride v UK Insurance [2017] EWCA Civ 144

Steven’s practice is nationwide. He will happily travel to accommodate a particular client’s needs, whether for conferences or court hearings.

As well as conducting trials, appeals and other hearings, Steven is also in high demand for his advisory work and pleadings. He is instructed on individual cases of varying values and complexity and also provides insurers with high level strategic advice in relation to credit hire, fraud and other road traffic related matters.

In terms of fraud, Steven has over 20 years experience of dealing with fraud ring, staged accident, LVI and phantom passenger claims. He deals with a wide range of claims from straightforward one Claimant exaggeration cases to fraud ring cases involving multiple claims advanced by organised criminal gangs.

Steven also provides advice to both insurers and insured on issues relating to policy coverage and interpretation.

He frequently lectures nationally on the subject

Steven has over 20 years’ experience in this field. He regularly advises on issues of contractual and statutory interpretation, following such cases through to mediation, joint settlement meeting or trial.

His involvement at all stages of the Dimond v Lovell litigation gave him a profound knowledge of consumer credit law which Steven has used to the advantage of clients in cases involving financial mis-selling and other disputes with (or between) financial advisers.

He routinely acts for companies or individuals who find themselves embroiled in complex commercial disputes. Typical examples of such work are: representing a wealthy business client who contended that she had been mis-sold various mortgages over a 10 year period; representing a bottled water company whose product was contaminated by a third party bottle supplier; representing a materials supplier accused by a large caravan manufacturer of supplying sub-standard product; representing several companies who claimed they have been mis-sold swap / derivative financial products by their banks; representing a Super League rugby club sued for breach of contract by a former player.

Steven is Head of Chambers’ 60-strong Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence Team.

He is a high-profile multi-track personal injury practitioner with over 25 years’ experience of dealing with complex and high value road traffic, employers’ liability, public and product liability cases.

He has twice been a finalist for Lawyer of the Year at the Northern Law Awards.

Steven has been complimented for his skills as an advocate on numerous occasions over the years, with the Court of Appeal describing his submissions as “very high quality” in Zurich v Umerji, as “excellent” in Bird v Acorn and of having “the elegance of simplicity” in McBride v UK Insurance.

Steven is ranked as a Band 1 Personal Injury Practitioner in Chambers & Partners Guide, which describes him as a “… Highly regarded senior junior who acts for both claimants and defendants in high-value personal injury claims. He has an excellent reputation for his handling of high-profile test case litigation. His cases involve complex medical and legal evidence…” and as an advocate who is “…Well received in court, very friendly and welcoming to clients. Steven is able to quickly identify the key issues and produce succinct arguments to support his opinion…”

The Legal 500 similarly identifies Steven as a Leading Individual in personal injury work, describing him as “…Very approachable with exceptional client care skills with a keen eye for detail. Steven is able to quickly identify the key issues and produce succinct arguments to support his opinion. He has the ability to unravel complex issues into easily digestible pieces which complement his excellent presentation skills and no nonsense approach…”

Steven’s cases tend to involve six or seven figure damages sums, though he does accept work at a lower value (for an appropriate fee) where complex or interesting issues arise.

Steven travels nationwide for hearings and conferences and is adept at working remotely with paperless instructions.

He is willing to act on a CFA-basis in suitable cases and is direct access qualified.

Steven has over 25 years’ experience dealing with costs cases for both Claimants and Defendants.

He is ranked as a Tier 1 costs practitioner in the Legal 500, which describes him as the ‘Best in the northeast on costs and procedural issues. Well received in court, very friendly and welcoming to clients. Steven is able to quickly identify the key issues and produce succinct arguments to support his opinion.

‘He has the ability to unravel complex issues into easily digestible pieces which complement his excellent presentation skills and no nonsense approach’

Steven has extensive experience of conducting detailed assessments and drafting Points of Dispute and Replies. He is adept at navigating electronic bills, with hands-on experience of using them in practice.

Steven has been instructed in numerous landmark costs cases over the years, with Court of Appeal appearances in such landmark cases as:

  • British Airways Plc v Prosser – on whether a solicitor is entitled to recover VAT charged on the full amount charged by an MRO (Medical Reporting Organisation).
  • Phillips v Willis – the first costs case on the Jackson reforms to reach the Court of Appeal, laying down guidance for when cases can properly be transferred out of the fixed costs regime.
  • Bird v Acorn Group – a leapfrog test case appeal which decided the short but important point of whether or not a disposal hearing was a ‘trial’ for the purposes of the fixed costs rules.

Steven travels nationwide for conferences, settlement meetings and hearings but is equally comfortable working remotely with paperless instructions.

Steven acts for both paying and receiving parties, and welcomes direct access instructions.

Steven is without doubt the leading Defendant credit hire barrister in the country. He has twice been nominated as Lawyer of the Year at the Northern Law Awards for his work in credit hire test case litigation.

“He is exemplary. What he doesn’t know about credit hire cases isn’t worth knowing.”- Chambers & Partners Guide 2021.

Steven has acted for Defendants in most of the leading cases, developing and implementing arguments which have gone on to become mainstays of credit hire law. The list of stellar cases he has conducted for Defendant insurers includes:

  • Dimond v Lovell [2002] 1 AC 384
  • Burdis v Livsey (aka Clark v Ardington) [2003] QB 36
  • Zurich v Umerji [2014] EWCA Civ 357
  • Stevens v Equity Syndicate Management Ltd. [2015] EWCA Civ 93
  • McBride v UK Insurance [2017] EWCA Civ 144
  • Irving v Morgan Sindall PLC [2018] EWHC 1147 (QB)
  • Bunting v Zurich Insurance [2020] EWHC 1807 (QB)

Steven tends to deal with high value multi-track credit hire claims, but accepts instructions on fast track or even small claims track cases where novel or test-case points arise. He travels nationwide, but is adept at dealing with matters remotely as and when required.

Steven can provide advice, drafting and representation at the individual case level, but his 25+ years of credit hire experience also allow him to provide valuable insight into wider strategic problems faced by insurers wishing to improve their performance in the credit hire arena.

Steven’s reputation within Claimant credit hire circles is well-known, with the Chairman of a well-known Plc once advising the National CHO Conference that “…discretion is the better part of valour…” when confronted with Steven as an opponent. Could there be any higher praise than having the Chairman of a PLC warn the entire credit hire industry against taking a particular barrister on?

Steven welcomes instructions via solicitors, licenced access or direct access routes.

Chambers and Partners 2022 - (Personal Injury) Band 1 "He will go into cases in great detail but at the same time he's very assured on his feet and thinks very quickly."
 
Chambers and Partners 2022 - (Motor Insurance Fraud) Band 2 (All circuits) -  "A hard-working, approachable counsel who's a good team player."
 
Legal 500 2022 (Personal Injury) Tier 3
 
Legal 500 2022 - (Costs) Tier 1 - "A junior who operates at silk level. He is tenacious, as excellent on paper as he is on his feet, and has great tactical sense."
 
Chambers and Partners 2021 (Personal Injury) Band 1
 
"He's very intelligent and has an encyclopedic knowledge of the law."
 
Chambers and Partners 2021 (Motor Fraud - All Circuits) Band 2
 
"He is exemplary. What he doesn't know about credit hire cases isn't worth knowing." "A very competent and robust individual who is well liked by the judiciary."
 
Legal 500 2021 (Personal Injury) Band 3
 
Very approachable with exceptional client care skills with a keen eye for detail. Steven is able to quickly identify the key issues and produce succinct arguments to support his opinion. He has the ability to unravel complex issues into easily digestible pieces which complement his excellent presentation skills and no nonsense approach.
 
Legal 500 2021 (Costs) Band 1
 
Best in the northeast on costs and procedural issues. Well received in court, very friendly and welcoming to clients. Steven is able to quickly identify the key issues and produce succinct arguments to support his opinion.
 
Chambers and Partners 2020 (Personal Injury) Band 1
Highly regarded senior junior who acts for both claimants and defendants in high-value personal injury claims. He has an excellent reputation for his handling of high-profile test case litigation. His cases involve complex medical and legal evidence. Strengths: "He's extremely knowledgeable and has a subtle and profoundly effective advocacy style."
 
Chambers and Partners 2020 (Motor Fraud All circuits) Band 2
An experienced junior admired for the strength of his motor insurance fraud practice. He brings impressive expertise to credit hire cases and exaggerated injury claims, and offers insurers robust advice on how to effectively combat fraud rings. Strengths: "He's technically very strong" and "an expert in credit hire cases."
 
Legal 500 2020 (Costs)
"A very strong advocate"
 
Chambers & Partners 2019 (Personal Injury) Band 1
"He is excellent on substantial credit hire disputes." "He's a good communicator, and is extremely knowledgeable in terms of liability issues."
 
Legal 500 2018/2019
"Very well known for his expertise in cost matters." Steven "has a solid track record in acting for clients in multimillion-pound joint settlement meetings and has appeared unled in Court of Appeal cases regarding fixed costs."
 
 
Chambers & Partners 2018 (Personal Injury) Band 2
 
Predominantly acts for defendants, though he also represents claimants in workplace accident claims. His cases involve complex medical and legal evidence.
 
Strengths: "Very personable. He has a very good manner with clients and fills them with confidence." "Intelligent, articulate and also able to put across complex arguments and submissions in a persuasive and simple manner so that clients can understand."
Recent work: Acted in a case involving a vulnerable alcoholic living in sheltered accommodation who stepped out in front of an oncoming car and suffered a significant closed head injury with multiple other fractures.
 
Legal 500 2017 (Costs)
"Very experienced in costs matters."
 
Chambers & Partners 2017 (Sports Law)
Represents sporting clubs and individuals in complex insurance and contractual disputes, as well as personal injury cases. Clients have included parties involved in rugby, football, cricket and darts.
Strengths: "He's innovative in his approach, very thorough and very knowledgeable."
 
Chambers & Partners 2016 (Personal Injury)
Acts principally for defendants in high-value personal injury claims. Noted for his strength in fraud and costs matters and offers additional expertise in sports law matters.
 
Strengths: "He is technically strong and able to think outside the box. He possesses very good client skills and is a strong advocate." "His drafting is very good and he is forensic in looking at all the evidence in fraud cases."
 
Chambers & Partners 2016 (Sports Law) Ranked Nationally
Routinely represents high-profile sports professionals and organisations in contractual and commercial disputes. His specialist personal injury background gives him a particular insight into insurance disputes.
 
Chambers & Partners 2015
Continues to provide high-calibre advice on an array of matters, incorporating fatal accidents, industrial diseases and fraud. He is lauded for his speciality in legal compliance in this sector.
Expertise: “He is a careful and meticulous practitioner.” “He is excellent in handling high-profile litigation and Court of Appeal work.”
 
Chambers & Partners 2015 (Sports Law) Band 1
Has a general commercial practice and brings this expertise to bear on sports contract disputes within football and cricket.
Expertise: "An advocate you can turn to for really thorny problems."
 
 
Chambers & Partners 2014
Acts for both claimants and defendants in a variety of highly complex areas. He is particularly noted for his expertise in costs and employers' liability cases.

Expertise: "He is technically excellent and has good insight and a very good knowledge of the issues." "His attention to detail is second to none. He's very approachable." Recent work: Turner acted for Chartis Insurance in defence of a complex fraud and credit hire case, successfully bringing the claimant to abandon her hire claim during trial. Sport: Regularly acts for individuals, agents and clubs on contract disputes, primarily on football-related matters but also in connection with cricket and darts.

Chambers & Partners 2012
Within Personal Injury: Steven Turner is "one of the best credit hire barristers in the UK,".
Within Sport Law: Steven Turner of Parklane Plowden has a broad sports practice that takes in boxing and football cases, amongst others.
 
 
Chambers & Partners 2011
Steven draws praise for his "sound advice" and for the quality of his technical arguments. He is also praised for his growing sports law practice.

Personal Injuries Bar Association

Reported/Notable Cases

 Credit hire

Bunting v Zurich Insurance Plc

Queen's Bench Division [2020] EWHC 1807 (QB) 13 May 2020

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Assessment of BHR Evidence

Keywords: Car Hire; Deposits; Hire charges; Measure of damages; Road traffic accidents; Credit Hire

Case Analysis | [2020] EWHC 1807 (QB) | [2020] 5 WLUK 541 | [2021] R.T.R. 16  | Judgment 

Summary: A first-instance judge had been entitled to rely on evidence as to the basic hire rate of a comparable car following a road traffic accident where the credit hire charges had been challenged. Whether or not a deposit was required by the car hire company was irrelevant in a case where there was no evidence of impecuniosity. The judge had been entitled to use his experience to make a rough and ready adjustment to the hire costs and his additional allowance was precisely the sort of matter that was open to a first instance judge and with whose judgment the appeal court should be very slow to interfere.

Ryder v Fisher

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Auxillis Clause 16

Keywords: Car hire; Cars; Economic loss; Foreseeability; Hire charges; Remoteness; Repairs; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2020] 1 WLUK 451 | Judgment 

Summary: Where a hire car had been damaged in a road traffic collision, the driver whose negligence caused the collision was liable to reimburse the hire car driver for a payment he had been contractually obliged to make to the hire company to cover its losses while the car was off the road being repaired. The driver's loss was not pure economic loss, and it was not too remote to be recoverable.

Irving v Morgan Sindall Plc

Queen's Bench Division [2018] EWHC 1147 (QB) 15 May 2018

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Assessment of impecuniosity; Assurances from the hire company that the hirer has no liability for hire charges.

Keywords: Car hire; Consumer credit; Consumer hire agreements; Damages; Hire charges; Hired vehicles; Impecuniosity; Insurance claims; Motor vehicles; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2018] EWHC 1147 (QB) | [2018] 5 WLUK 253 | [2018] R.T.R. 23  | [2018] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 614 | Judgment 

Summary: A driver whose car had been written off in an accident caused by another driver and who had been assured by a credit hire company that she would never be personally responsible for hire charges for her replacement car had a contingent liability to the hire company and was not getting "free" car hire. The other driver's insurer was liable to pay the charges. Assessment of impecuniosity also had to be realistic. A Claimant did not need to risk penury.

 McBride v UK Insurance Ltd

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2017] EWCA Civ 144 15 Mar 2017

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Correct Approach to dealing with BHR Evidence; Correct approach to tackling the zero excess issue.

Keywords: Car hire; Excesses; Credit Hire; Measure of damages; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2017] EWCA Civ 144 | [2017] 3 WLUK 380 | [2017] R.T.R. 27  | [2017] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 352 | Judgment 

Summary: The Court of Appeal considered the assessment of damages in road traffic collision cases in which the claimant had hired a car from a credit hire company and had paid a premium to reduce his insurance excess to nil. It considered the approach to be taken where the evidence of basic hire rates did not include a nil excess element, and it confirmed that Stevens v Equity Syndicate Management Ltd [2015] EWCA Civ 93, [2015] 4 All E.R. 458, [2015] 2 WLUK 866 had not been wrongly decided.

Gow v NFU Mutual Insurance

County Court (Central London) [2016] 5 WLUK 520 24 May 2016

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Need to Hire; Availability of other vehicles

Keywords: Car hire; Hire charges; Credit Hire; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2016] 5 WLUK 520 | Judgment 

Summary: The claimant, whose supercar had been damaged in a road traffic accident, had established a need to hire a car of the supercar's prestige while his own car was being repaired, even though he had several other cars that he could have used.

Frankland v UK Insurance Ltd

County Court (Darlington) [2016] 3 WLUK 548 18 Mar 2016 (on appeal)

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Need to Hire; Availability of Other vehicles; Civil procedure; Consumer law;

Keywords: Car hire; Hire charges; Road traffic accidents; Special damages; Summary judgments

Case Analysis | [2016] 3 WLUK 548 | Judgment

Summary: A Claimant whose Ferrari had been damaged had no realistic prospect of succeeding with demonstrating that he needed to hire a substitute vehicle. He had a fleet policy with other cars that he could have used in place of a hire car. The District Judge had been right to dismiss his claim. Appeal dismissed.

Sobrany v UAB Transtira

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2016] EWCA Civ 28 28 Jan 2016

Subject: Credit Hire; Consumer law; Civil evidence; Insurance

Keywords: Admissibility; Car hire; Consumer hire agreements; Fresh evidence; Insurance claims; Insurance policies; Subrogation

Case Analysis | [2016] EWCA Civ 28 | [2016] 1 WLUK 604 | [2016] R.T.R. 18  | [2016] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 266 | Judgment 

Summary: A district judge had erred in limiting a claimant's recovery of credit hire charges for a replacement vehicle to the period of an initial credit hire agreement, having found that there were two identical or substantially similar insurance policies in place in respect of separate credit hire agreements.

Stevens v Equity Syndicate Management Ltd

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2015] EWCA Civ 93 26 Feb 2015

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Correct Approach to Assessment of Basic Hire Rates

Keywords: Car hire; Credit hire agreements; Hire charges; Insurance claims; Measure of damages; Road traffic accidents; Basic hire rates evidence

Case Analysis | [2015] EWCA Civ 93 | [2015] 4 All E.R. 458 | [2015] 2 WLUK 866 | [2015] R.T.R. 24  | [2015] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 503 | Judgment 

Summary: The Court of Appeal considered the proper approach to determining the sum attributable to the daily basic hire rate from the total charge incurred under a credit hire agreement. The Court’s finding that non-impecunious Claimants should receive no more than the lowest reasonable rate offered by a mainstream or local reputable provider (a solution proffered by Steven in submissions) has been universally applied, saving insurers literally millions of pounds on their hire outlay.

Morrell v Covea Insurance

County Court (Cambridge) [2014] 6 WLUK 651 20 Jun 2014

Subject: Credit Hire; Like for like hire vehicle

Keywords: Credit Hire Damages; Hired vehicles; Insurers; Reasonableness; like for like

Case Analysis | [2014] 6 WLUK 651 | Judgment 

Summary: A Claimant Bentley owner was not entitled to hire a like for like Bentley when all she would use it for was local shopping and the school run. A Mercedes that ‘would not shame her at the school gates’ would have been a reasonable and adequate substitute. Her hire claim was restricted accordingly.

Zurich Insurance Plc v Umerji

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2014] EWCA Civ 357 25 Mar 2014

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; impecuniosity; Debarral Orders; Burden of Proof

Keywords: Car hire; Credit hire agreements; Failure to mitigate; Impecuniosity; Burden of Proof; Measure of damages; Road traffic accidents; Storage

Case Analysis | [2014] EWCA Civ 357 | [2014] 3 WLUK 716 | [2014] R.T.R. 23  | Judgment 

Summary: In a claim for damages which included the cost of hiring a replacement car after a claimant's car was written off in an accident, a recital which debarred the claimant from relying on impecuniosity applied to justification for the duration of hire just as much as justification for the payment of credit hire rates. The debarring order did not contain any form of qualification and the two claims of impecuniosity operated in the same way as a matter of law. Furthermore, the burden of pleading and proving impecuniosity rested solely with the Claimant.

Lagden v O'Connor (aka Burdis v Livsey / Dennard v Plant)

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2002] EWCA Civ 510 19 Apr 2002

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Credit Repair; Duration of Hire; Assessment of Hire Rates; Sham Agreements / Pretence.

Keywords: Cars; Consumer credit; Consumer hire agreements; Damages; Exempt agreements; Hire charges; Repairs; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2002] EWCA Civ 510 | [2003] Q.B. 36  | [2002] 3 W.L.R. 762  | [2002] 4 WLUK 345 | [2003] R.T.R. 3  | [2002] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 524 | Judgment 

Summary: Where a credit repair company had paid the costs of repair a claimant was still entitled to recover such costs from the defendant since at the moment when the accident occurred the claimant suffered a direct and immediate loss, the measure of which was the cost of the repairs which were in fact carried out, but it was not a condition precedent to the recovery of compensation for that loss that the car actually be repaired. Claims for credit hire were to be assessed by comparison with locally available rates.

Lagden v O'Connor (aka Burdis v Livsey / Dennard v Plant)

County Court (Oxford) [2001] 9 WLUK 175 14 Sep 2001.

First Instance Test Cases.

Subject: Credit Hire.

Keywords: Consumer credit; Hiring; Motor vehicles

Case Analysis | [2001] 9 WLUK 175 | [2002] Lloyd's Rep. I.R. 138 | Judgment 

Summary: In conjoined proceedings in which the recovery of vehicle credit hire charges was sought, the court set out guidelines of general application aimed at assessing the quantum of hire rates and held that (1) the credit hire scheme operated by the Helphire Group was not a pretence, and (2) where an impecunious claimant had no cheaper means of obtaining a replacement vehicle than by entering into a credit hire agreement, the full reasonable costs of entering into that agreement were recoverable.

Dimond v Lovell

House of Lords [2002] 1 A.C. 384 11 May 2000

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Consumer law

Keywords: Consumer credit; Consumer hire agreements; Damages; Motor vehicles; Credit Hire.

Case Analysis | [2002] 1 A.C. 384  | [2000] 2 W.L.R. 1121  | [2000] 2 All E.R. 897 | [2000] 5 WLUK 296 | [2000] R.T.R. 243  | [2000] C.C.L.R. 57 | 2000 Rep. L.R. 62  | (2000) 97(22) L.S.G. 47 | (2000) 150 N.L.J. 740 | Times, May 12, 2000 | Independent, May 17, 2000 | Judgment 

Summary: D's car was damaged as a result of an accident caused by L. She hired a car from a specialist company under an agreement which provided that the company would have conduct of any litigation, and that the costs of the hire would not be payable until the conclusion of the case. In proceedings commenced against L, the recorder awarded D damages equivalent to the car hire charges which had been payable under the agreement. L appealed to the Court of Appeal which held that (1) the agreement was regulated by the Consumer Credit Act 1974; (2) the agreement having been unenforceable by the company against D on the ground that it had not been properly executed under s.61(1) of the Act, D could not recover the hire charges from L, and (3) had the agreement been properly executed, D would have been entitled to recover the hire charges in full. D appealed, but the appeal was dismissed.

Dimond v Lovell

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2000] Q.B. 216 29 Apr 1999

Subject: Credit Hire Damages; Consumer law; Insurance; Banking and finance; Damages; Trusts; Transport; Personal injury

Keywords: Consumer credit; Consumer hire agreements; Damages; Hire charges; Motor vehicles

Case Analysis | [2000] Q.B. 216  | [1999] 3 W.L.R. 561  | [1999] 3 All E.R. 1 | [1999] 4 WLUK 348 | [1999] R.T.R. 297  | [1999] C.C.L.R. 46 | (1999) 96(21) L.S.G. 40 | (1999) 149 N.L.J. 681 | (1999) 143 S.J.L.B. 181 | Times, May 3, 1999

Summary: Following an accident in which her car was damaged by L's negligence, D hired a car from a specialist agency, which deferred payment for the hire until damages were recovered. It was conceded that the agreement had not been properly executed because it had contained no notice of the charges at the time when D had signed it, but it was held that the agreement was not regulated under the Consumer Credit Act 1974. L appealed, contending that the agreement was regulated under the Act and was therefore unenforceable. D argued that (1) she could recover damages for the loss of the use of the vehicle in any event, and (2) she had acted appropriately in mitigating her damages by approaching the agency. The Court of Appeal found for the Defendant, establishing for the first time that the Consumer Credit Act 1974 applied to credit hire agreements.

Costs and civil procedure

 British Airways Plc v Prosser

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2019] EWCA Civ 547 2 Apr 2019

Subject: VAT; Civil procedure

Keywords: Agency; Costs; Disbursements; Fees; Invoices; Medical reports; Personal injury claims; Proportionality; Reasonableness; Solicitors; Taxable supplies; VAT

Case Analysis | [2019] EWCA Civ 547 | [2019] 1 W.L.R. 4513  | [2019] 4 All E.R. 1104 | [2019] 4 WLUK 7 | [2019] Costs L.R. 347  | [2019] S.T.I. 956 | Judgment 

Summary: A solicitor was entitled to accept at face value the VAT charged on invoices submitted by a medical reporting organisation which it had instructed to obtain reports in a personal injury claim. The solicitor was not obliged to investigate whether VAT had been properly charged on individual items, since the reports had been obtained at reasonable and proportionate cost. The court gave guidance as to when VAT should be charged on such invoices, taking into account the contractual relationships between solicitors, clients, MROs and providers of the medical reports.

Phillips v Willis

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2016] EWCA Civ 401 22 Mar 2016

Subject: Civil procedure; Personal injury

Keywords: Car hire; Court rules; Hire charges; Low value personal injury claims; Personal injury claims; Pre-action protocols; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2016] EWCA Civ 401 | [2016] 3 WLUK 632 | [2016] C.P. Rep. 28 | [2016] 3 Costs L.R. 473  | [2017] R.T.R. 4  | Judgment 

Summary: In low-value road traffic accident claims where the personal injury element had been resolved and only a modest dispute about car hire charges remained, the case should continue to be heard under CPR Pt 8. In the instant case, the district judge had been wrong to order that the claim should continue under Pt 7.

Bird v Acorn Group Ltd

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2016] EWCA Civ 1096 11 Nov 2016

Subject: Civil procedure

Keywords: Compensation; Costs; Disposal hearings; Fixed costs; Personal injury claims; Public liability insurance; Settlement; Trials

Case Analysis | [2016] EWCA Civ 1096 | [2017] 1 W.L.R. 1915  | [2016] 11 WLUK 355 | [2017] C.P. Rep. 8 | [2016] 6 Costs L.O. 959  | [2017] P.I.Q.R. P7  | Judgment 

Summary: In a leapfrog appeal, a short but important point on fixed costs was determined. A disposal hearing was a "trial" where a personal injury claim had started under the Pre-Action Protocol for Low Value Personal Injury (Employers Liability and Public Liability) Claims and had settled after judgment but before trial. Consequently, the correct scale of fixed costs was contained in the third column of part B of Table 6D in CPR r.45.29E. An identical definition applied to cases started under the Pre-action protocol for low value personal injury claims in road traffic accidents.

Conlon v Royal Sun Alliance Insurance Plc

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2015] EWCA Civ 92 26 Feb 2015

Subject: Civil procedure

Keywords: Costs; Hire charges; Multi-track; Reallocation; Small claims track

Case Analysis | [2015] EWCA Civ 92 | [2015] 2 WLUK 810 | [2015] C.P. Rep. 23 | [2015] 2 Costs L.O. 319  | Judgment 

Summary: The special costs rule in CPR r.27.14, preventing a party in proceedings on the small claims track from paying another's costs unless it had behaved unreasonably, applied to second appeals. Where an insurer had not acted unreasonably in defending a claim to recover car hire charges there would be no order in respect of costs of the claim or the claimant's successful second appeal. Although such costs could have been awarded if the claim was retrospectively reallocated to the multi-track under CPR r.26.10, retrospective reallocation was not appropriate.

Evans v Arriva Yorkshire Ltd

County Court (Leeds) [2013] 11 WLUK 787 28 Nov 2013

Subject: Civil procedure; Legal advice and funding; Insurance; Employment

Keywords: After the event insurance; Costs between the parties; Employers' liability claims; Legal costs insurance premiums; Litigation funding agreements; Reasonableness; Self-insurance; Trade union membership

Case Analysis | [2013] 11 WLUK 787 | Judgment 

Summary: In circumstances where a trade union had financially backed a successful employers’ liability claim, a court described the correct approach to assessing the reasonableness of after the event insurance premiums, particularly self-insurance premiums provided for by the Access to Justice Act 1999 s.30, in cases which were bulk rated in relation to exposure and risk.

Scott v Duncan

Queen's Bench Division [2012] EWHC 1792 (QB) 29 Jun 2012

Subject: Civil procedure; Legal advice and funding

Keywords: Conditional fee agreements; Conduct; Costs; Costs assessments; Notices of funding; Relief

Case Analysis | [2012] EWHC 1792 (QB) | [2012] 6 WLUK 761 | [2012] 4 Costs L.R. 787  | Judgment 

Summary: Prior to a detailed costs assessment hearing, a master had been entitled to grant relief from sanctions in respect of a claimant's failure to serve notice of a change in funding arrangements; the master had correctly identified that the crucial matter in exercising his discretion was that the defendant had known all along that he was in litigation with a claimant who was funded by a conditional fee agreement.

Littler v Barraclough

Queen's Bench Division [2000] 4 WLUK 356 12 Apr 2000

Subject: Civil procedure; Road traffic

Keywords: Case management; Practice Directions; Variation

Case Analysis | [2000] 4 WLUK 356

Summary: L and B were involved in a road accident in July 1993 and L made a high value claim against B which came before the court for a case management conference in October 1999. Both parties attended and the district judge on that occasion directed that evidence from seven expert witnesses could be given at trial. He further directed that three were to give oral evidence and four to give evidence by way of written report. In March 2000, L issued an application to vary the order. L, by that time, wished to have two of the experts whose written reports were to be relied upon attend trial for cross examination. There had been no material change of circumstances between the date of the case management conference and the application to vary. B objected to the application on the basis that L was effectively trying to appeal against the first district judge's decision out of time. The Court upheld B’s arguments. The correct approach in such circumstances was to appeal, and not to apply to vary.

Sitapuria v Khan

County Court (Liverpool) [2007] 12 WLUK 187 10 Dec 2007

Subject: Legal advice and funding; Civil procedure

Keywords: Costs orders; Percentage increases; Success fees

Case Analysis | [2007] 12 WLUK 187 | Judgment 

Summary: If cases were settled before opening at trial, then they were not contested hearings for the purposes of CPR r.45.15(6) and the winning representatives were only entitled to a reduced success fee pursuant to CPR r.45.16 and CPR r.45.17(1)(c).

Personal Injury

Obi v Patel

Queen's Bench Division [2018] EWHC 3985 (QB) 8 Oct 2018

Subject: Personal injury; Civil evidence

Keywords: Delay; Expert evidence; Expert reports; Life expectancy; Medical treatment; Road traffic accidents

Case Analysis | [2018] EWHC 3985 (QB) | [2018] 10 WLUK 141 | Judgment 

Summary: Permission to rely on expert evidence in a PI quantum trial arising out of a road traffic accident was refused where the defendant had delayed, for tactical reasons, notifying the claimant of his intention to use expert evidence, and the case could be properly run on the basis of the existing evidence.

Palmer v Marks and Spencer Plc

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2001] EWCA Civ 1528 9 Oct 2001

Subject: Health and safety at work

Keywords: Breach of statutory duty; Employers' liability; Personal injury

Case Analysis | [2001] EWCA Civ 1528 | [2001] 10 WLUK 245 | Judgment 

Summary: When determining liability under the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992, it was necessary to carry out an assessment which took into account all relevant factors in their context. In the instant case, the employer had not breached Reg.12(1) or 12(2) by installing a protruding weather strip at the door of the staff exit.

Consumer credit / secret commissions

McWilliam v Norton Finance (UK) Ltd (In Liquidation)

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2015] EWCA Civ 186 11 Mar 2015

Subject: Consumer law; Civil evidence; Agency

Keywords: Admissions; Credit brokers; Disclosure; Fiduciary duty; Informed consent; Loan agreements; Payment protection insurance; Secret commission; agents fees

Case Analysis | [2015] EWCA Civ 186 | [2015] 1 All E.R. (Comm) 1026 | [2015] 3 WLUK 308 | [2015] 2 B.C.L.C. 730 | [2015] P.N.L.R. 22  | [2015] C.T.L.C. 60  | Judgment 

Summary: On the arrangement of a loan, a credit broker owed its consumer clients a fiduciary duty such that it was liable to account to them for commissions it had received without their informed consent.

Imageview Management Ltd v Jack

Court of Appeal (Civil Division) [2009] EWCA Civ 63 13 Feb 2009

Subject: Agency; Torts

Keywords: Agents' fees; Agents' liabilities; Breach of fiduciary duty; Commission; Football; Secret profits

Case Analysis | [2009] EWCA Civ 63 | [2009] 2 All E.R. 666 | [2009] 1 All E.R. (Comm) 921 | [2009] Bus. L.R. 1034  | [2009] 1 Lloyd's Rep. 436 | [2009] 2 WLUK 374 | [2009] 1 B.C.L.C. 724 | Times, March 24, 2009 | Judgment 

Summary: In making an undisclosed side deal with a football club to obtain a work permit for a foreign footballer, a football agent had acted in breach of its fiduciary duty to the footballer. The footballer had consequently to pay no more fees to the agent and was entitled to repayment of commission already paid as well as the fee received by the agent for the secret deal.

Dimond v Lovell

House of Lords [2002] 1 A.C. 384 11 May 2000

Subject: Consumer Credit; Credit Hire Damages; Consumer law

Keywords: Consumer credit; Consumer hire agreements; Damages; Motor vehicles; Credit Hire.

Case Analysis | [2002] 1 A.C. 384  | [2000] 2 W.L.R. 1121  | [2000] 2 All E.R. 897 | [2000] 5 WLUK 296 | [2000] R.T.R. 243  | [2000] C.C.L.R. 57 | 2000 Rep. L.R. 62  | (2000) 97(22) L.S.G. 47 | (2000) 150 N.L.J. 740 | Times, May 12, 2000 | Independent, May 17, 2000 | Judgment 

Summary: D's car was damaged as a result of an accident caused by L. She hired a car from a specialist company under an agreement which provided that the company would have conduct of any litigation, and that the costs of the hire would not be payable until the conclusion of the case. In proceedings commenced against L, the recorder awarded D damages equivalent to the car hire charges which had been payable under the agreement. L appealed to the Court of Appeal which held that (1) the agreement was regulated by the Consumer Credit Act 1974; (2) the agreement having been unenforceable by the company against D on the ground that it had not been properly executed under s.61(1) of the Act, D could not recover the hire charges from L, and (3) had the agreement been properly executed, D would have been entitled to recover the hire charges in full. D appealed, but the appeal was dismissed.

Other Cases of Significance

On Medical Ltd v Medco Registration Solutions Ltd

Chancery Division [2017] EWHC 3111 (Ch) 22 Nov 2017

Subject: Civil procedure; Personal injury; Health

Keywords: Balance of convenience; Interim injunctions; Medical evidence; Medical reports; Personal injury claims; Suspension; Whiplash injury

Case Analysis | [2017] EWHC 3111 (Ch) | [2017] 11 WLUK 545 | Judgment 

Summary: A medical reporting organisation was refused interim injunctive relief consisting of restoration of its status as a high volume national medical reporting organisation on the portal used to source medical reports in personal injury claims arising from road traffic accidents. The significant financial and reputational damage suffered by its reduction in status had to be balanced against the integrity of the portal system.

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BA (Hons) English & Film Studies, University of Kent Common Professional Examination (Nottingham Trent University) Bar Vocational Course (Inns of Court School of Law)