LITIGATE vs EXPEDIATE: My dog ate my postman (and other popular excuses)

As a litigator for more than twenty years, I have heard every excuse in the book for failing to comply with deadlines.

The problem is: if another party fails to meet a deadline, there is no penalty, unless you ask the Court to intervene. This costs time and money. And, you will most likely get an order that gives the other party more time, anyway.

The Court should order that the other party pay your costs, but:

  • They will usually be a proportion of your total legal costs; and

  • You will most likely be unable to enforce the costs order until after the dispute has been finalised.


  • The deadlines are mostly immutable (subject to some very narrow and tightly controlled exceptions).

  • If the other party fails to comply with a deadline, there are no excuses and no extensions.

  • If any party makes a misconceived application to the Court or Arbitrator, costs orders are for indemnity costs, payable immediately and without set off.

  • There are no more expensive and time-consuming applications or long delays while you wait for the other party to comply.

Click here for more information about the EXPEDIATE Rapid Arbitration System


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