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Court of Appeal decision in Simmons v Castle

Posted: in by Michelle Barron.

The ruling relates to the 10% increase in general damages that will apply when the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO) comes into force in April 2013. Under the original ruling, the 10% general damages increase would have applied to all cases decided after 1 April 2013. Following the revision, however, the 10% will now not apply to where the claimant has entered a conditional fee arrangement before 1 April 2013. For any cases started after this date, the 10% increase will be balanced by reductions in legal costs.

Lord Chief Justice substitutes the following for paragraphs 19 and 20 in the original judgment:“Accordingly, we take this opportunity to declare that, with effect from 1 April 2013, the proper level of general damages in all civil claims for (i) pain and suffering, (ii) loss of amenity, (iii) physical inconvenience and discomfort, (iv) social discredit, (v) mental distress, or (vi) loss of society of relatives, will be 10% higher than previously, unless the claimant falls within section 44(6) of LASPO.”

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