COSTS BUDGETING AND THE FINAL BILL: HARRISON IN THE COURT OF APPEAL
How definitive is a costs budget when it comes to detailed assessment? That is an issue that has been troubling the courts now for a few years. The judgment of the Court of Appeal today in Harrison -v- University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire Hospital NHS Trust  EWCA Civ 792 provides guidance. I will provide a more detailed examination later on.
There are other issues which are explored in detail a 4 New Square article on the subject – available here.
- How definitive is a costs budget on the budgeted”future costs” when the matter comes for assessment.
- Is the budget definitive in relation to incurred costs
- In relation to the budgeted “future costs” the budget is to be seen as definitive. The budget will not be departed from (upwards or downwards) unless there is “good reason to do so”.
- The “incurred costs” element of the budget is not definitive. It has to be assessed in the traditional way.
JUDGMENT ON THE FUTURE BUDGETED COSTS
The court held that the existence of the budget had an effect on those costs that the court had budgeted. They considered the appellant’s arguments that costs budgeting would replace the detailed assessment.