DEFAMATION
Newspapers, Television, Radio, Internet

In this case the House of Lords held that where a successful claimant in a libel action against a newspaper had entered into a conditional fee arrangement (CFA) which included a percentage uplift as a success fee, the newspaper’s liability in costs to pay that success fee was not incompatible with its right to freedom of expression (under the Human Rights Actand Article 10 of the European Convention of Human Rights) even though the claimant (in this case Naomi Campbell) might have had sufficient resources to fund their litigation without resorting to a CFA. The House of Lords refused the application of Mirror Group Newspapers for a ruling that the uplifted percentage of the fees charged by Schillings to their client, Ms Campbell be disallowed. In total MGN faced legal costs, including their own, totaling £1,086,295. The House of Lords held that since Access to Justice Act 1999 the uplift of success fee element can be included in a claim for costs against the losing party. The deliberate purpose of the 1999 Act was to impose the cost of all CFA litigation on the unsuccessful party, in this case MGN.
The Times Law Reports 21 October 2005

See Law Updates August 2005 European Commission proposes Europe wide music licensing for online use

And see Law Updates June 2005 Beckhams kidnap case shows the difficulties of ‘no-win no-fee’ litigation but also see Law Updates July 2004 Lawyers Costs Capped in Contingency Fee Cases, Musa King v Telegraph Group Limited (2004)