4.24: Formal offers to settle
10.33: Court considerations in making costs award

Case Summary

This was a Judgment on costs arising from a Trial. The Defendant argued they were successful in the litigation and should be entitled to enhanced costs and full reimbursement for disbursements. Justice Belzil noted that Rule 10.31 dealt with court-ordered costs and that Rule 10.33(1) outlined several factors the Court may consider in making a costs award. His Lordship found that the Defendant was overwhelmingly successful at trial, the litigation engaged a number of significant issues arising from the interpretation of the Matrimonial Property Act, RSA 2000, c M-8, and the litigation was complex and document intensive.

His Lordship found that the Defendant previously made three offers to settle the litigation, found that the Plaintiff’s failure to disclose bank accounts constituted litigation misconduct, and determined that the Defendant was entitled to enhanced costs.

His Lordship further found that the Defendants could recover their non-expert disbursements relating to photocopying, courier and related charges. Rule 10.31 provided that an unsuccessful party may have to pay the reasonable costs of expert reports and Justice Belzil found that the Defendant were entitled to recover from the Plaintiff the costs of their Expert Report.

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