Posted by: John Brace | 26th July 2017

Why does the British justice system expect the impossible?

Why does the British justice system expect the impossible?


Liverpool Civil & Family Court, Vernon Street, Liverpool, L2 2BX

Liverpool Civil & Family Court, Vernon Street, Liverpool, L2 2BX

This is a tale of Janet and John (which for the purposes of doubt and copyright law are not characters in books to teach children how to read).

Janet and John are instead in the Kafkaesque world of the British justice system. This is a world where the normal rules of time and space don’t apply!

Janet, John and another quite sensibly decided to settle their respective differences by consent order at a public hearing 9 months ago, but then came a 9 month legal argument about costs.

She asked the Tribunal to issue costs directions at a hearing. The Judge ruled that he and his fellow Tribunal Members would decide on her costs application.

Janet wanted John to pay her employer £1,212. She explained in her costs application that she had sent John letters stating the information he had requested was on a website (when it fact she admitted at the hearing it wasn’t on a website) and therefore John should pay her for £1,212 which included time spent sending him those letters.

The Judge ruled that he and his fellow two members would decide on her costs application once Janet made it.

John replied to the costs application, disputing what Janet stated. On a 2:1 decision it was decided that he hadn’t acted unreasonably between the 4th August 2016 and the 22nd August 2016 (which covered the first two of her letters). So, £224.66 of her costs application was rejected on that basis.

That left £967.57, which was reduced by a further £467.57 to £500.

John paid Janet’s employer the £500, but then pointed out that as part of her costs application had been about a time when the Tribunal had ruled him reasonable, that part of his costs in responding to the costs application should be paid by Janet. He saw this only as fair and asked for a much lower amount of £212.20.

The Judge decided not to decide on this costs application and threatened John with a wasted costs order if he didn’t shut up.

So John requested permission to appeal (both against the £500 costs order and against the non-decision over the £212.20 costs application).

Over 9 months later after his costs application for £212.20, he received the permission to appeal decision (which was denied).

In it, the Judge demanded (in a communication sent to John on the 25th July 2017) that he (John) must send an email by 4 pm on the 15th March 2017.

Like Janet he expected John to do the impossible and threatened him with further financial problems if he did not!

So that is my brief summary of the state of the British justice system, it expects the impossible from parties and when it doesn’t manage to achieve the impossible, the parties are supposed to pay the price and again for it through taxes!

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  1. Did the judge or anybody else lie under oath?

    • I can confirm there have been no oaths uttered because there were no witnesses.