The court refused the Defendant’s application on the particular facts of this case instead considering that there were compelling reasons why the issue of limitation should be addressed at trial, particularly because the Defendants had not pleaded the limitation issues and had raised them only the day before the hearing.
However, the judgment of Warby J makes it clear that the court will take a strict approach as to the question of whether a claimant has done everything in its power to set the proceedings in motion for the purposes of stopping limitation from running (the test arising from the authorities to date). He observed that “doing all that is in one’s power” to set the wheels of justice in motion will ordinarily include proffering the correct court fee to the court office at the same time as presenting the claim form and applicable particulars of claim.
Warby J held that, in this case, there had been an underpayment of the court fees due on issue. In particular:
The decision highlights the importance of claimants and their legal advisors correctly assessing the fee payable on issuing the claim form and, where possible, obtaining the Court’s approval of their calculation since Warby J indicated that if the court staff had made an incorrect calculation which was not the claimant’s fault, the claimant would have done all it reasonably could do therefore meeting the test for the claim being “brought” for the purposes of stopping limitation running.
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