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Protective Expenses Orders 13/01/2012 The Scottish Government is consulting on proposals for a costs capping scheme in cases challenging decisions by public authorities which impact on the environment.

Protective Expenses Orders

The Scottish Government is consulting on proposals for a costs capping scheme in cases challenging decisions by public authorities which impact on the environment.

The usual rule in civil cases is that the 'loser pays'. These proposals would cap the amount of legal costs that a challenger would have to pay the other side, if they lose, at £5,000. This is balanced by a proposal to introduce a similar cap - of £30,000 - on the defending party's liability to pay the challenger's legal costs.

The proposals as a whole are designed to provide access to justice in environmental cases within a robust legislative framework which allows public bodies to make decisions with confidence.

"The Scottish Government is committed to affordable access to justice in cases of importance, including where environmental issues are at stake," said Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs Roseanna Cunningham. "Challenges to these decisions can, however, have significant impacts on the economy. We are determined to ensure that major planning and infrastructure decisions are not unreasonably delayed."

Comments are sought by 3rd April 2012.

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