4.29: Costs consequences of formal offer to settle
10.29: General rule for payment of litigation costs
10.33: Court considerations in making costs award

Case Summary

This was a Decision regarding Costs following a Summary Trial regarding the final division of matrimonial property. Justice Loparco explained that Rule 10.29(1) provides that a successful party is entitled to Costs against an unsuccessful party and that Rule 10.33(1) provides several factors that the Court may consider in making a Costs Award.

The Applicant sought double Costs, as Rule 4.29 provides that a party who beat their Formal Offer to Settle is entitled to double Costs after the Formal Offer is made. The Applicant had made a Formal Offer to Settle on the basis that the Respondent would keep some of the assets in exchange for a payment of $100,000. The Judgment arising from the Summary Trial held that the equalization payment due from the Respondent was $105,524.25.

Justice Loparco had to consider whether one party was substantially successful, or, whether there was divided success leading to no Costs being awarded. Justice Loparco found that no party had been substantially more successful than the other. Her Ladyship also found that the final equalization payment did not meet the high degree of certainty that would entitle the Applicant to double Costs pursuant to Rule 4.29. Justice Loparco did, however, order the Respondent to pay the Applicant $2,500 for not responding to a request to set matters down for a hearing in a timely fashion and for delays in finalizing an outstanding issue pursuant to Rule 10.29(g).

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