In the case of Kirby & Others (2013) it was decided that arranging payments should be reduced and limited to 3 minutes at a Grade D rate. This is because the SCCO see that making payments is routine and traditionally, no higher rate or time would be allowed.
Clarion have recently received a Bill of Costs back from the SCCO where the Cost Officer has allowed making a payment at 6 minutes at Grade C. This is something that we have not seen or heard anything about prior to this Bill.
In this matter the Cost Officer has allowed 6 minutes at Grade C stating ‘Payment of invoices is 3 minutes @ Grade D. If completed or high value, 6 @ C can be given.’ The ‘high value’ is discretionary as to the Costs Officer’s views and no further guidance was given about this decision.
We suggest that Deputyship teams should delegate payments to Grade D fee earners wherever possible, but bear this decision in mind if a high value transaction is required. It might be reasonable for a Grade C fee earner to make high value payments and the SCCO may allow this time at 6 minutes.
Scott Kemp is an Apprentice Paralegal in the Costs Litigation and Funding team at Clarion Solicitors.
You can contact him on 0113 288 5688 or firstname.lastname@example.org