Case: Cohen v Fine & Ors [2020] EWHC 3278 (Ch) (01 December 2020)

HHJ Hodge QC now looks to offer an early Christmas present to those seeking costs in the Business & Property Courts. HHJ Hodge has followed in the footsteps of Master Whalan and O’Farrell J commenting on the out-dated 2010 GHR – this time applying a 35% increase to the Band 1 GHR; the same being a justifiable ‘starting point’. This would provide for rates of:

  • Grade A                £295 from £217
  • Grade B                £260 from £192
  • Grade C                £220 from £161
  • Grade D                £160 from £118

Whilst HHJ Hodge of course reminds all that his judgment is ‘pending the outcome of the present review’; perhaps the fact that HHJ Hodge was himself also a member of the Civil Justice Counsel provides a little more weight to the argument for increased rates across the board? Interestingly and pleasingly, these rates are also suggested as just a ‘starting point’ on the basis alone of the RPI Inflation since 2010 without any other consideration. This could therefore see that the starting point being raised even higher provided the Foskett Sub-Committee has been provided with the relevant evidence required – something that was proving problematic. Specific reference was further made to the reliance and applicability of CPR 44.4 which would justify an even further increase upon the RPI increased rates above – providing a case satisfies necessary features, oh and of course, if the retainer supports the higher rates claimed.

HHJ Hodge was also critical of the table of fees for Counsel, which will be further welcomed.

If we can assist you with any costing queries, or specifically on hourly rate and application of the same to your costs either within or outside of the Business &Property Courts, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Kate Benn at

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