Glossary of terms
Access to justice
- The ability of a person to obtain legal advice and representation,
and to secure the adjudication through the courts of their legal
rights and obligations.
ATE (After the Event)
insurance - Insurance taken out by one party against the risk
of him having to pay his opponent's legal costs, where the insurance
policy is taken out "after the event" giving rise to
CFA (Conditional Fee Agreement)
- An agreement pursuant to which a lawyer agrees with his or her
client to be paid a success fee in the event of the client's claim
succeeding, where the success fee is not calculated as a proportion
of the amount recovered by the client. A typical example of a
CFA is where a lawyer is retained on a "no win, no fee"
Claimant - The person
issuing the claim, previously known as the plaintiff.
Costs - The costs incurred
by a party through engaging lawyers to act for it. These costs
may include the cost of expert witnesses, barristers, photocopying
and other disbursements. Costs may be distinguished from fees
which are payable to the court in civil litigation.
Costs capping - A mechanism
whereby judges impose limits on the amount of future costs that
the successful party can recover from the losing party.
Costs shifting - The ordering
that one person is to pay another's costs. Costs shifting usually
operates on a "loser pays" basis, so that the unsuccessful
party is required to pay the successful party's recoverable costs.
CPR (Civil Procedure Rules 1998) - The
primary rules of court for civil litigation in England and Wales,
introduced as a consequence of the Woolf reforms.
Defamation - The use of
words to injure a person's reputation. Libel and slander are defamation.
Defendant - The person
who has a claim made against them. They can defend (dispute the
claim) or admit liability, in part or in full.
ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights) - The
Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental
Freedoms (also called the "European Convention on Human Rights"
and "ECHR") was adopted under the auspices of the Council
of Europe in 1950 to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms
ECtHR (European Court of Human Rights) -
the Strasbourg court that considers human rights-based appeals
from contracting states.
HRA (Human Rights Act 1998) - Incorporates
the ECHR into UK law.
Injunction - A court order
which either restrains a person from a course of action or behaviour,
or which requires a person to follow another course of action.
Jurisdiction - The area
and matters over which a court has legal authority.
Libel - A written and
published statement/article which infers damaging remarks on a
Master of the Rolls - Head
of the Court of Appeal (Civil Division).
One way costs shifting - A
regime under which the defendant pays the claimant's costs if
his or her claim is successful, but the claimant does not pay
the defendant's costs if the claim is unsuccessful.
PCC (Press Complaints Commission) - The
self-regulatory body of the press. Funded by the newspapers and
magazines that subscribe to it, the PCC handles and adjudicates
complaints made about articles appearing in the British press.
PressBof - The Press Standards
Board of Finance is the financial arm of the PCC and manages the
subscriptions and fees from the industry.
Publication - releasing
information to a party other than the subject of the information
Qualified one way costs shifting - A
system of one way costs shifting which may become a two way costs
shifting system in certain circumstances, e.g. if it is just that
there be two way costs shifting given the resources available
to the parties.
Slander - Spoken words
which have a damaging effect on a person's reputation.
Sub judice - An ongoing
case or matter that is before a judge and has not yet been decided.
Tort - An action in tort
is a claim for damages to compensate the claimant for harm suffered.
Such claims arise from cases of personal injury, breach of contract
and damage to personal reputation. As well as damages, remedies
include an injunction to prevent harm occurring again.