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Interim costs success for Specsavers

9 May 2012

The Court of Appeal has given useful guidance on the issue of interim costs awards pending a final outcome of a large trade mark litigation matter, as part of the ongoing litigation between Specsavers v Asda.

The court felt it was appropriate (despite Asda arguing costs should be reserved pending the outcome of its application for permission to appeal to the Supreme Court) that although costs had not yet been formally assessed, Specsavers be awarded their costs, subject to a substantial discount to reflect the issues upon which it had lost as the court had already made a final determination of all issues concerning liability; except those specific issues referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union, for which costs must be reserved.

This pragmatic decision confirms that successful parties in a case should not have to wait unduly for their costs; however a win overall does not guarantee an award of costs for those specific issues they have been unsuccessful on.

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