Legal cost proportionality may sound simple, but within the context of legal proceedings it is very elusive and probably best defined in hindsight. Where the legal costs of one party to litigation are to be paid by the other party to the litigation, then as well as them having to be reasonable they also have to be proportionate to the matters in issue. However, litigants and their solicitors have to advise based on circumstances as they arise and the Court is not supposed to apply hindsight to this process when considering their charges.

Losing parties regularly seek to argue proportionality when it comes to assessing how much should be paid in legal charges. When considering proportionality the Court firstly has to consider the costs as a whole. If they look disproportionate, then it has to be shown that the steps taken were necessary, otherwise they will not be paid for.

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