Post-Judgment Interest Not Payable on Pre-Judgment Interest

Reasons respecting whether post-judgment interest is payable on pre-judgment interest were recently published in the case of Paul v. CUMIS Life Insurance Company, 2011 BCSC 796.  Analysing the language of the Court Order Interest Act, Mr. Justice Ehrcke determined that it is not:

“…under British Columbia’s Court Order Interest Act, post-judgment interest is payable on the principal amount of the judgment plus costs, but it is not payable on pre-judgment interest.”

Preparation Required When Seeking Lump Sum Cost Order:

The Plaintiff’s lawyer also sought an order that costs be paid as a lump sum.  Such an order would have eliminated the need for a hearing before a Registrar.  However, the Plaintiff’s lawyer neglected to provide the Court with a Bill of Costs.  Instead, counsel provided the Court with a “range” that might be allowed for the items claimed.  While recognizing that the Supreme Court Civil Rules now allow for an award of lump sum costs without the parties’ consent, Mr. Justice Ehrcke found that the pre-conditions for such an order had not been met by the Plaintiff:

[14]         In this case, CUMIS does not consent to the fixing of lump sum costs, and submits that costs should be assessed in the usual way by the Registrar. CUMIS points out that counsel for the plaintiffs has not provided an adequate Bill of Costs, in that it does not set out the amount claimed for each item. Instead, counsel for the plaintiffs has simply given a range that might be allowed for the items claimed. As well, the list of disbursements contains insufficient detail for assessing the reasonableness of the amounts claimed.
[15]         I agree with counsel for CUMIS that this is not an appropriate case for an award of lump sum costs, as counsel for the plaintiffs has not provided adequate material for the Court to make a reasoned decision as to what the amount of costs ought to be.

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