10.2: Payment for lawyer’s services and contents of lawyer’s account
10.29: General rule for payment of litigation costs
10.31: Court-ordered costs award
10.33: Court considerations in making costs award

Case Summary

The parties provided written submissions on Costs following Justice Fagnan’s dismissal of the Appellant’s Appeal of a Review Officer’s decision. The Appellant had previously entered into a contingency fee agreement (the “CFA”) with the Respondent law firm. The Review Officer determined that the CFA was deficient but found that the Respondent’s time entries were reasonable. The Respondent had beat prior Formal Offers made to the Appellant when the Appeal of the Review Officer’s decision was dismissed.

Justice Fagnan reviewed the Rules regarding Costs and noted that the successful party is generally entitled to Costs against the unsuccessful party according to Rule 10.29 and Rule 10.31, which state that the Court has wide discretion to determine an appropriate Costs Award. Rule 10.33 sets out factors that the Court may consider in making a Costs Award, including any settlement offers per Rule 10.33(2)(h). Justice Fagnan noted that the value of the claim was on the low end of Column 2 of Schedule C.

After considering the written submissions and the circumstances, including that the deficient CFA required the Review Officer to have to determine reasonable fees pursuant to Rule 10.2, Justice Fagnan granted the Respondent double Column 2 Costs for the Appeal hearing. Justice Fagnan granted 1.5 times Column 2 Costs for the written arguments on Costs because the parties had mixed success.

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