Following the post about the rule changes coming into force tomorrow there was some discussion about the transitional provisions. The confusion comes about partly because the SI introducing them says the same thing in different ways. However further confusion arises because some of the changes are introduced by Practice Direction and not by the SI. The position appears to be that:
- Those rule changes made by Statutory Instrument apply to actions issued on or after 6th April 2016.
- It was not clear whether the changes to the Practice Direction have immediate effect on the 6th April, regardless of the date when proceedings were issued.
However, thanks to James B, (see comments below) I have found the transitional provisions. These are well hidden, and not included in the index or annex to the 83rd update. They make it clear that some of the new rules in the Practice Direction only apply to proceedings issued on or after 6th April 2016. However the requirement to file a bill of costs which shows the “phases” is not mentioned in the transitional provisions. The assumption is (presumably) that it comes into force at once.
The Regulations are here (para 17).
” The amendments made to Practice Direction 3 apply to proceedings commenced on or after 6th April 2016.”
- Rules relating to lodging budgets 21 days ahead of the case management conference.
- The filing of budget discussion reports.
- Revised requirements where claim is between £25,000 and £50,000.
- The exemption from costs budgets of cases where a claim is made by or on behalf of a child.
All apply to proceedings issued on or after 6th April 2016.
The Practice Direction says the amendments “come into force” on the 6th April 2016. This differs from the Statutory Instrument which states, expressly, the changes apply to actions issued on or after 6th April.
However the Practice Direction has transitional provisions which state:
1) The amendments made to Practice Direction 3 apply to proceedings commenced on or after 6th April 2016.”
- The provision for an exemption to costs budgeting where the claimant has a limited or severely impaired life expectancy (5 years or less remaining).
- The fact that hourly rates will not be set on costs budgeting.
THE REQUIREMENT TO DIVIDE A BILL INTO SEPARATE PARTS TO SHOW EACH PHASE
This is a requirement set out by amending PD47 and not PD 3. However the transitional provisions are totally silent on the issue of whether or not this applies to all actions or actions issued on or after 6th April 2016. PD 47 is not mentioned at all in the transitional provisions. The fact they are not mentioned in the transitional provisions could give rise to an inference that they come into force immediately.
- Important changes to costs budgeting: the key points
- Changes to cost budgeting rules: key dates and times
- Rule changes coming into force: 48 hours to go.