Brealey (claimant/respondent) v Shepherd & Co Solicitors (defendant/appellant)

Tuesday 20 February 2024

By Appellant’s Notice filed on 20 January 2023, the Defendant firm of solicitors (D) appeals against order of Cavanagh J dated 19 December 2022 dismissing D’s appeal from the decision of Costs Judge Rowley. dated 29 November 2021. The latter decision was handed down in third party assessment proceedings brought by the Respondent, a beneficiary of the estate of his mother under s 72(3) Solicitors Act 1974.

Master Rowley held that D was not entitled to be paid the fees that had been levied by the name-partner in the firm for work that he had done in his capacity as executor of the estate.

The Claimant had accepted that Mr S was entitled to charge for work done by him in relation to day-to-day administration of the estate but said that in absence of a charging clause in his mother’s will, Mr S was not entitled to charge for acting in his capacity as executor.

Master Rowley held that any fees claimed as work done by Mr S as solicitor in relation to the administration of the estate would require an explanation at the next stage of the detailed assessment hearing.

Cavanagh J upheld Costs Judge Rowley’s decision.

View hearing:

Part 1

Part 2