Counting the costs

“You really know when things are not going well for a solicitor…” said BusyBody today.

“When they stop buying you lunch,” said OldSmoothie.

“Worse than that,” said BusyBody.

“When they start appealing costs orders,” said TheBusker.

“That’s when you start worrying for your own fees,” said TheVamp.

“Very close,” said BusyBody, “but worse still. It’s when they start appealing the costs of the costs appeals.”

“Sounds desperate,” said TheBusker.

“Last chance saloon,” said BusyBody. “If they lose this, they lose it all.”

“It sounds like a deathly and never-ending legal version of the hall of mirrors,” said OldRuin. “It could go on and on like Jarndyce v Jarndyce. Always appealing the costs of the last cost appeal.”

“Isn’t that something what the Achilles Paradox was all about?” said TheCreep.

“That however fast he went Achilles would never catch the tortoise would would always have departed his last stop by the time Achilles arrived.”

“I’ve always preferred to see it like Sisyphus,” said HeadofChambers. “Always pushing the stone up the hill, only for it inevitably to come tumbling down after you’ve arrived.”

“Either way, the point is that people could spend their lives in litigation over something which started out and really should have been a small and simple matter,” said TheBusker.

“Nothing’s ever small and simple when it comes to costs,” said OldSmoothie.

“I’ve always enjoyed costs work myself,” said UpTights. “Unlike most of my cases, the brief is thoroughly prepared and even delivered early.”

“And that wouldn’t have anything to do with the fact that it’s their own money at stake rather than their client’s, now would it?” said TheVamp.

“Quite so,” came the reply.

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister practising at the English Bar, written by barrister and writer Tim Kevan. For more information and to read posts from the last few years visit Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

March 19, 2013 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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