I have found John M Hayes to be reliable and efficient, always willing to deal with any queries or matters arising and most importantly of all, to have detailed knowledge of current costs law.
Sarah Lapsley, Chestnutts Solicitors, Southport
LAA Assessment of Costs in all cases
As previously advised in the article https://www.johnmhayes.co.uk/blog/transitional-provisions-for-all-claims-to-be-assessed-by-the-laa/, the LAA have now agreed a date with HMCTS for the transfer of Court Assessed claims to the LAA and will take place on Monday 17 August 2020.
From 17 August 2020 all claims must be sent to the LAA for assessment (it is no longer optional). Any claims for assessment received by HMCTS from this date will be returned without being processed. The Senior Courts Costs Office will reject any claims submitted via CE File on or after 17th August and refund the court fee paid.
Any claims submitted to HMCTS before 17th August may be returned to you for submission to the LAA if the HMCTS assessment process has not started. Any claims submitted to SCCO prior to 17th August will be retained and the court will endeavour to process the claims within 4 weeks of the date of receipt.
Providers should consider sending claims to the LAA in advance of the mandatory transfer on 17th August to avoid unnecessary delay with the assessment of their claims.
The LAA are currently working to formulate a new format of bill submission that will replace the current court Bill of Costs format and avoid the use in very big cases of a line by line submission on CCMS.
Payments on Account
The LAA are making a change to the rules surrounding how many payments on account in respect of profit costs can be made in a 12 month period.
POA’s in respect of Provider Profit Costs
The Standard Civil Contract 2018, from 13 July 2020, has been amended to increase the number of payments on account applications that can be submitted.
Providers can now submit a maximum of 4 applications instead of 2 within any 12 month period.
Providers cannot make a POA in respect of profit costs within the first 3 months from the date that funding was granted.
It is worth noting that in family cases the costs of all proceedings and FAS should be included within the payment submission. Providers are unable to claim separate profit costs payments for FAS or the different aspects.
In CCMS you will need to enter 100% of the profit costs incurred to date and the CCMS system will calculate the 75% that will be paid to the provider.
POA’s in respect of Disbursements
POA’s in respect of disbursements remain the same and can be made at any point during the period of the public funding certificate providing that the final bill has not been submitted.
Disbursements vouchers must be submitted with any POA of disbursements of £20 or over (including VAT).
Improve your cash flow once you have received an invoice/incurred a disbursement by making a POA. You can also claim up to 12 minutes as profit costs for completing this task.
The LAPG and other representative bodies have been lobbying the LAA to change payment processes so that they more accurately reflect current practice and enable providers to claims fees when needed.
The LAA have indicated that they will be consulting representative bodes on the following:
Although these are welcomed changes and proposals, the LAA could and should go further in order to assist providers, especially during these unprecedented and challenging times.
At John M Hayes we stay up to date with any guidance or rules as set out by the LAA, so you can rest assured that we will prepare LAA compliant claims and supporting documentation ready to be submitted on CCMS to ensure you get paid promptly and first time. Please contact your local Regional Manager or call us on 0370 300 3780 now, for all your billing needs.
Monday 20th July 2020