What is the process of Taxation? Order L of Supreme Court Rules 2013
1. The Registrar, or such other officer as the Chief Justice may appoint for the purpose, shall be the Taxing Officer of the Court.
2. The Taxing Officer shall allow all such costs, charges and expenses as appear to him to have been necessary or proper for the attainment of justice or for defending the rights of any party, and shall not allow any costs, charges and expenses which appear to him to have been incurred or increased unnecessarily or through negligence or mistake.
3. Where in the opinion of the Taxing Officer a fee ought to
be allowed for any matter not provided for in these rules or a
question arises in taxation on which he considers it necessary
to obtain the directions of the
Chamber Judge, the Taxing Officer may refer such matter to the Chamber Judge for orders.
4. Where the Taxing Officer is of opinion that any costs have been injuriously or unnecessarily occasioned by the negligence or improper conduct of any advocate on record, he shall not allow any charge for the same without the leave of the Court.
5. The Taxing Officer shall without delay bring to the notice of the Chamber Judge any wrong charge which appears to him to have been willfully made in any bill of costs.
6. Every bill of costs lodged for taxation between party and party shall contain a certificate from the advocate lodging the same that the fee paid to him by his client or agreed to be paid to him is not less than the amount of fee claimed by him in the bill.
7. Every bill of costs shall be properly dated throughout and shall show in a column for the purpose the money paid out of pocket.
8. Every bill of costs shall be certified by the signature of the advocate on record in the case.
9. The fee for taxation and registration of every bill of costs shall be paid in Court-fee stamps when the bill is lodged for taxation.
10. Every bill of costs shall, wherever possible, be accompanied by vouchers, and every item of disbursement and the cause thereof shall be distinctly specified, and no payment out of pockets shall be allowed except on production of the necessary voucher, or in the case of advocate's fee, without the signature of the advocate that the fee has been paid, or agreed to be paid.
11. Within eight weeks from the date of the judgment or order awarding costs, or within such further time not exceeding four weeks as the Taxing Officer may for good cause allow, the party to whom the costs have been awarded shall lodge in the Registry the bill of costs and vouchers. He shall also serve on the opposite party a copy of the bill of costs and file in the Registry proof of such service. The Taxing Officer shall fix a date for the taxation of the bill and shall notify the parties of the date fixed.
12. A bill of costs presented out of time shall be returned to the party and the Taxing Officer shall not receive or tax the same except by order of the Chamber Judge.
13. Except as otherwise provided in these rules or by any law for the time being in force, the fees set out in the Second Schedule to these rules may be allowed to advocates.
14. No retaining fee to an advocate shall be allowed on taxation as between party and party.
15. Where an advocate appears for different parties in the same suit, appeal or matter only one set of fees shall be allowed unless the Court otherwise orders.
16. Where two or more appeals arising out of a single
proceeding are heard together and costs are awarded in both or
all of them, only one set of advocate's fee shall be allowed for
the hearing, unless the Court or the
Chamber Judge otherwise directs.
17. In defended appeals, suits and references under article 143 and 317 (1) of the Constitution, the first day's hearing fee shall be allowed in full, for the first four and a half hours of the hearing or part thereof, in accordance with the Schedule subject to the provisions contained in rules 19 and 20.
18. No refresher shall be allowed unless the hearing has lasted for more than two days i.e. nine hours, and the Taxing Officer shall have discretion to reduce the refresher or to allow a refresher having regard to the duration of the hearing after the first nine hours:
Provided that when a matter is adjourned without any arguments on merits, no fee shall be charged for that day.
19. Where the hearing of a part-heard case is held up on account of the Court being occupied with any miscellaneous matters, the time taken in the hearing of such miscellaneous matters shall be taken into consideration by the Taxing Officer for the purposes of a refresher.
20. In cases involving less than twenty thousand rupees in value the Taxing Officer shall have discretion to reduce the fees, including the first day's hearing fee and the 'acting fee' suitably according 10 the nature of the case.
21. Where an appeal is compromised prior to its being set
down for hearing the fees to be allowed to advocate under item 1
of Part I of the Schedule II shall be half the amounts specified
therein subject to the terms of the compromise.
22. The fees provided in items 3 to 8 of Part I of the Second Schedule shall be subject to reduction in the discretion of the Taxing Officer according to the nature of the case.
23. Where a dispute arises between the advocate on record and his client as to the fees and charges payable to the advocate, either party may apply to the Chamber Judge for an order to have the hill taxed and, on an order for taxation being made, the Taxing Officer may proceed to tax the bill. The application when made by the advocate, shall be accompanied by a copy of the bill sought to be taxed:
Provided that where the client has expressed his consent in writing to the taxation of costs between himself and his advocate on record in any proceeding, the advocate may present his bill of costs in that proceeding for taxation without an order of the Chamber Judge, and the Taxing Officer shall thereupon proceed to tax the bill.
24. In every case of taxation between advocate and his client, the client shall be duly summoned by the Taxing Officer to attend the taxation, and the summons shall be served on the client at least two weeks prior to the date fixed for taxation.
25. Subject to any agreement in writing to the contrary, the rules regulating the taxation of costs between party and party shall be applicable as far as may be to taxation between advocate and client.
26. No agreement between the advocate on record and his client to pay fees higher than those prescribed in the Second Schedule shall be recognised unless the same has been recorded in writing and is signed by the client and has been filed before the commencement of the hearing.
Explanation.- For the purpose of this rule "agreement in writing" shall include the correspondence between the advocate on record and his client from which such an intention may be gathered.
27. Where the Taxing Officer is of the opinion that any such
agreement filed as aforesaid is unfair or unreasonable, he may
place the matter before the Chamber Judge for orders and the
Judge may make such order
as he may think just, and the taxation shall proceed in accordance with such order:
Provided that where fees are payable by the client personally or out of a fund belonging entirely to him, any fees actually paid by the advocate on record to the senior or other advocate in excess of the fees prescribed in the Schedule shall not be called in question if the payment of such fee is duly authorised by the client.
28. Where the amount of a bill of costs between advocate and client is reduced by 1/6th or more, the advocate's fee for attending taxation shall be disallowed.
29. An advocate whose bill against his client has been taxed may apply to the Chamber Judge for an order against his client or his legal representative for payment of the sum allowed on taxation or such sum thereof as may remain due to him. The order so made may be transmitted for execution to such Court as the Chamber Judge may direct.
30. Any party who is dissatisfied with the allowance or disallowance by the Taxing Officer of the whole or any part of the items in a bill of costs may apply to the Taxing Officer to review the taxation in respect thereof.
31. An application for review shall be made within three weeks and a copy of the application shall be served on the opposite party.
32. Objections in writing specifying concisely the items or parts of the bill objected to and the grounds for the objections shall be served with the notice on the other party, and a copy thereof shall at the same time be carried in before the Taxing Officer.
33. Objections which were not taken in at the time of the taxation shall not be taken in at the stage of review, unless allowed by the Taxing Officer.
34. Upon application to review his order, the Taxing Officer
shall reconsider his taxation upon the objections carried in and
may, where he thinks fit, receive further evidence in respect
thereof, and shall state in a
certificate the grounds of his decision thereon and any special facts or circumstances relating thereto.
35. Any party dissatisfied with the decision of the Taxing Officer on review may, not later than seven days from the date of the decision, or within such further time as the Taxing Officer or the Chamber Judge may allow, apply to the Chamber Judge for an order to review the decision of the Taxing Officer and the Chamber Judge may thereupon make such order as may seem just.
36. No evidence shall be received by the Chamber Judge upon the review of the Taxing Officer's decision which was not before the Taxing Officer when he taxed the bill or reviewed his taxation unless the Chamber Judge otherwise directs.
37. The certificate of the Taxing Officer by whom any bill has been taxed shall unless it is set aside or altered by the Chamber Judge, be final as to the amount of the costs covered thereby.
38. The allowance to be made to witnesses per diem shall be such as the Taxing Officer may think reasonable having regard to the profession or status of the witness.
39. Witnesses residing more than five miles from the place where the Court sits shall be allowed traveling expenses according to the sums reasonably and actually paid by them and shall also be allowed such sums for subsistence money and carriage hire as the Taxing Officer, having regard to the daily allowances under rule 38, considers reasonable.
40. Every person summoned to give evidence shall have
tendered to him with the summons a reasonable sum for his
traveling expenses (if any) and for the first day's attendance
and shall, if obliged to attend for more
than one day, be entitled, before giving his evidence, to claim 'Tom the party by whom he has been summoned the appropriate allowances and expenses for each additional day that he may be required to attend.
41. Witnesses who have not been paid such reasonable sums for
their expenses as the Court allows by its rules may apply to the
Court at any time in person to enforce the payment of such sum
as may be awarded to
42. For the purposes of these rules, a folio shall be deemed to consist of two hundred words; seven figures shall be counted as one word; and more than half folio shall be reckoned as a folio.
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