An alternative dispute resolution solution to Courts is Mediation which typically takes one day and costs a fraction of legal fees.
There is no costs-capping regime. The parties must, however, provide a detailed budget for the case fairly early in the proceedings but the budget itself can be expensive to prepare. It would not be unusual for legal costs in bringing a trademark case to trial to amount to at least £400,000.
Nualtra Ltd supplied evidence to show that no profits had been acquired from the use of the NUTRIPLEN mark during the period and judgement was delivered that €35,000 was an appropriate sum to award to the plaintiffs. However, the issue of the legal fees involved in the various actions brought the dangers of infringement into sharp relief. In his judgement, Mr. Justice Twomey wrote, “There does seem to this Court something perverse about the fact that a damages claim by the plaintiff for a maximum of €260,000, which has led to an award of €35,000 in damages, could cost over €2 million in legal fees and almost put the defendant company out of business and which could have led to the loss of jobs.”
Meghan Markle is suing Associated Newspapers (ANL), the publisher of the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, over an article detailing a handwritten letter sent to her father Thomas Markle in August 2018. The court heard that the total costs for both sides in the lead up to and during the trial, which is expected to take place in January, are now an estimated £3million. This includes Meghan’s costs totalling £1.8 million and the newspaper reaching £1.2million. During the costs and case management hearing today, Jessie Bowhill, who represents the Duchess, said: “The overall total costs figures are £1,798,043.57 for the claimant and £1,230,425 for the defendant.
The costs of litigation vary considerably in the English courts, according to the size and complexity of proceedings. A simple first instance case in the IPEC is unlikely to be less than £100,000 to £200,000, but complex cases in the Patents Court can cost several million pounds, before appeal. These costs will largely be made up of fees from the solicitors, barristers and (at first instance) experts.
for free impartial advice to prevent infringement contact Clive Bonny at
Clive is a certified IP advisor and registered mediator