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In the case of Shaw v Merthyr Tydfil County Council  HHJ Seys Llewellyn QC has transferred the Claimant's appeal about the validity of a Claimant's Part 36 offer that had been beaten at trial to the Court of Appeal pursuant to the 'rarely exercised' powers to do so under CPR 52.13. The District Judge below had followed the binding High Court decision in Thewlis v Gropama  EWHC 3 TCC that had held an offer headed 'Part 36 offer' and containing the terms of the old Part 36 wording should not be objectively construed as a Part 36 offer within the meaning of the new rules. HHJ Seys Llewellyn ordered the transfer on the basis that that there was some other compelling reason for the transfer as he was satisfied that the appeal had strong prospects of success and if he did not transfer the appeal he would be bound to follow it. He criticised the decision as inconsistent with the test contained within previous Court of Appeal authority (C V D  EWCA Civ 646) and as failing to approach the question from the standpoint of what a reasonable solicitor would have understood the offer to have meant.
This appeal is likely to be heard this summer and will provide welcome clarity to an area that has been blighted by uncertainty and unduly technical restriction.
David Rivers has been acting for the appellant throughout the case, instructed by Iain Scott of Hugh James.