Calderbank offers revisited

By Miranda Whiteley

The recent Court of Appeal decision in Walker Construction (UK) Ltd v Quayside Homes Ltd suggests that it may not be necessary for a defendant to make a Part 36 offer to secure full costs protection at trial. We look at the circumstances in which a defendant can confidently make a Calderbank offer with a limited costs liability and the implications of the rather confusing message coming from the courts.

The existence of two separate regimes (offers complying with Part 36 and Calderbank offers, which do not) is a recipe for confusion. The problem was made much worse by the redrafting of Part 36 in 2007 and the uncertainty that followed about whether offers were valid Part 36 offers. From 2010, the Court of Appeal made a concerted effort to introduce certainty concerning the costs consequences of settlement offers.

The cause of certainty was put back by the majority decision of the Court of Appeal in Medway PCT v Marcus. The court held that where the quantum of a clinical negligence claim was legitimately much higher than the sum recovered by the claimant at trial (quantum was agreed at £525,000 but the claimant only recovered £2,000 because, although he won on liability, he failed on causation), it was fair for the defendant to recover 75 per cent of its costs…

Click on the link below to read the rest of the Mills & Reeve briefing.

Sign in or Register to continue reading this article

Sign in


It's quick, easy and free!

It takes just 5 minutes to register. Answer a few simple questions and once completed you’ll have instant access.

Register now

Why register to The Lawyer


Industry insight

In-depth, expert analysis into the stories behind the headlines from our leading team of journalists.


Market intelligence

Identify the major players and business opportunities within a particular region through our series of free, special reports.


Email newsletters

Receive your pick of The Lawyer's daily and weekly email newsletters, tailored by practice area, region and job function.

More relevant to you

To continue providing the best analysis, insight and news across the legal market we are collecting some information about who you are, what you do and where you work to improve The Lawyer and make it more relevant to you.

Analysis from The Lawyer

  • head1

    LPOver and out?

    The trend for unbundling legal work is advancing through the law firm ranks but there is still resistance in some quarters - namely in-house. We asked why


Fountain House
130 Fenchurch Street

Turnover (£m): 79.50
No. of lawyers: 367