The High Court judge, the Premiership club and the Texas duo

Across the City and beyond litigators are starting to consider what the Jackson reforms will mean for their firms. The judiciary too is being trained in the art of controlling costs – although half a day may seem a bit measly for such a mammoth change.

Mr Justice Peter Smith is one judge who pulls no punches when it comes to directing cases. A prime example is when he refused to recuse himself from a trial in which Addleshaw Goddard appeared after the firm turned him down for a job in its litigation department.

Smith J was down to decide the legal battle between the former owners of Liverpool FC, Martin Hicks and George Gillett, and the club’s former directors and financiers RBS (see The Lawyer The Top 20 Cases 2013), but the battle settled last week.

The judge put his stamp on the case in October, when he ordered Hicks and Gillett to hand over in excess of £10m by way of security for costs (see blog). That doesn’t take into account how much the pair have forked out in terms of legal costs. For RBS and the other defendants, legal fees are estimated at £7m – and that was before the trial began.

Had the feuding parties set their differences aside for the good of the club in 2010, Liverpool FC might have had enough cash to buy back ace striker Fernando Torres. And the player might have remembered how to score.

Elsewhere in litigation:

  • Tugendhat J allows Katie Price privacy case against Peter Andre to proceed

  • British Airways employee Nadia Eweida is ruled to have suffered discrimination at work over her Christian beliefs, European judges rule

  • Pinsents boosts litigation team in London and Paris

  • And, for more on the cases to watch in 2013 click here.