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How Kestrel Tackled the Jackson Reforms

By Kestrel Business Solutions

By now everyone has heard about the Jackson Reforms which came into effect in April this year. These new cost and case management rules - and a bundle of measures – heralded an explicit new fixed-costs regime in April. The changes include cost and case management requirements affecting all contentious cases except those heard in the Commercial and Admiralty courts. Perhaps the biggest change is the requirement for parties to set, share and agree budgets at the very start of the court process. Where parties fail to do this, the presiding judge will do it for them.

But whilst everyone has now heard about these reforms managing these risks will require considerable cost and case management skills which has left some legal firms uncertain as to how they will meet this requirement on a sustainable and easy to use manner for the legal practitioners. Kestrel released their Cost Budgeting Tool in April and have already assisted many practitioners meet these requirements, with minimal interruption to their daily workload and training on the tool.

Reynolds Porter Chamberlain have successfully deployed this tool, with select other legal firms currently awaiting deployment or in the assessment phase.

Key features also include:

  • Extracting data based on either a period range or on a date range, and extracts the time & disbursement records direct from the Practice Management database.
  • Allows multiple matters to be included in a single Precedent form.
  • Highlights invalid entries allowing for correction before submission to Court.
  • Allows for: 5 Experts budget information to be recorded; 5 Leading/Junior Counsel Budget information to be recorded; 9 Contingent Costs to be recorded; 8 fee earner bands or fee earners budget and actual data to be recorded.
  • Requires no additional software to install and is quick to do so
  • Minimal training is required for the practitioner

Key benefits include:

  • Auto population of the Precedent H spreadsheet:
      - Saves practitioners time in surfacing information from different sources
      - Ensures accuracy  
  • Alleviates the error handling process as the application highlights invalid entries allowing for correction before submission to Court.
  • Easy to print with output formatted as expected with no manipulation or intervention by the practitioner.

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