Kuwait Oil Company (KSC) v Al-Tarkait UKEAT/0210/19/OO

Appeal against the ET’s costs order limiting the Respondent’s costs to “the sum of the compensation awarded to the Claimant and the costs awarded to the Claimant”. Appeal dismissed.

The Claimant had been dismissed by the Respondent for gross misconduct, and he brought claims in the ET for disability discrimination, unfair dismissal and notice pay based on wrongful dismissal. Only the unfair dismissal claim succeeded, and the Claimant's basic award was reduced by 80 per cent for contributory conduct. The ET then considered the rival costs applications, which weighed a relatively small amount of costs claimed by the Claimant against a substantial sum claimed by the Respondent; it concluded that the costs awarded to the Respondent should be limited to "the sum of the compensation awarded to the Claimant and the costs awarded to the Claimant", on the basis that (1) the Respondent should not have incurred any costs in excess of that sum, and (2) it was a reasonable level at which to set costs, taking account of the Claimant's financial resources. The Respondent appealed, contending that the ET had erred in making the orders limiting the costs that the Respondent could recover.

The EAT held that the order made was sufficiently clear to meet the requirement that it must specify the part of the Respondent's costs payable by the Claimant. However, orders such as this one were not to be encouraged: a cap consisting of an exact amount would be much better, and an exact amount could easily have been stated here.


Published: 11/03/2020 11:07