We received fantastic news today from ACAL (The Association of Child Abuse Lawyers) following ACAL’s executive team and David Greenwood’s lobbying of the committee regarding the exclusion of abuse claims from the proposed draft fixed recoverable costs rules (“FRC”).
ACAL were able to persuade the rules committee to exclude child sex abuse cases from the first draft, however neglect and physical abuse cases remained in the proposed FRC rules. David persisted and has now been able to secure the exclusion of neglect and physical abuse cases from the second draft.
In advance of the fixed recoverable costs (FRC) rules being signed off later this year, the current draft of the exclusion of abuse cases from FRC that is contained in the new rules at 26.9(10)(c) is:
“(10) A claim must be allocated to the multi-track where that claim is—
(c) a claim for damages in relation to harm, abuse or neglect of or by children or vulnerable adults;”
This definition comes from paragraph 4.3(8) of the EL/PL Pre-Action Protocol, which provides that “(This Protocol does not apply to a claim—) for damages in relation to harm, abuse or neglect of or by children or vulnerable adults”.
The rules will provide that abuse claims will be excluded from FRC and allocated to the multi-track.
This success will have significant implications for the recoverability of reasonable costs in abuse cases for the foreseeable future and is much welcomed news for the industry.