Commonwealth Consolidated Acts

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FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA ACT 1976 - SECT 37N

Parties to act consistently with the overarching purpose

             (1)  The parties to a civil proceeding before the Court must conduct the proceeding (including negotiations for settlement of the dispute to which the proceeding relates) in a way that is consistent with the overarching purpose.

             (2)  A party's lawyer must, in the conduct of a civil proceeding before the Court (including negotiations for settlement) on the party's behalf:

                     (a)  take account of the duty imposed on the party by subsection (1); and

                     (b)  assist the party to comply with the duty.

             (3)  The Court or a Judge may, for the purpose of enabling a party to comply with the duty imposed by subsection (1), require the party's lawyer to give the party an estimate of:

                     (a)  the likely duration of the proceeding or part of the proceeding; and

                     (b)  the likely amount of costs that the party will have to pay in connection with the proceeding or part of the proceeding, including:

                              (i)  the costs that the lawyer will charge to the party; and

                             (ii)  any other costs that the party will have to pay in the event that the party is unsuccessful in the proceeding or part of the proceeding.

             (4)  In exercising the discretion to award costs in a civil proceeding, the Court or a Judge must take account of any failure to comply with the duty imposed by subsection (1) or (2).

             (5)  If the Court or a Judge orders a lawyer to bear costs personally because of a failure to comply with the duty imposed by subsection (2), the lawyer must not recover the costs from his or her client.



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