Tag: Photocopy charges

Commercial Copy Rates Not Helpful When Addressing Reasonable Photocopy Disbursements

A decision was recently publshed by the BC Supreme Court website addressing reasonable photocopy disbursements in an ICBC Claim.  Although it is a 2006 decision decided under the old rules, the Court’s comments remain relevant finding that commercial photocopy charges are not helpful when deciding a reasonable rate to charge for photocopy disbursements due to litigant privacy concerns.
In the recently published case (Kind v. Leung) Master Caldwell provided the following observation:

5] There is also information in here about photocopying through commercial endeavours.  There are privacy concerns related there and I take counsel’s point, but again the physical cost of copying in those facilities seems to run between five cents and 10 or 11 cents per page.

[6] Making allowance for in-house copying at a reasonable rate to meet the obligations of privacy and confidentiality, given the costs as I seem to have limited information here in the material relating to equipment, I am not able to indicate or to determine on the material provided by the plaintiff that their costs exceed 30 cents a page.  The rate set will be 30 cents per page.

You can click here to access more recent caselaw addressing photocopy disbursements.

More Disbursement Caselaw

Adding to this site’s archived caselaw addressing disbursements in injury litigation, reasons for judgement were released last week by the BC Supreme Court, New Westminster Registry, addressing the reasonableness of a variety of disbursements in the prosecution of an ICBC Claim.
In last week’s case (Kezel v. Greenslade) the Plaintiff was involved in two collisions in July 2007.  She sued for damages and in the course of the lawsuit accepted an ICBC formal settlement offer for $46,000 plus costs and disbursements.  The parties agreed to reasonable costs but a variety of disbursements were challenged.   The judgement is worth reviewing for the Court’s discussion of the following disbursements:
1. Medico-legal reports from multiple experts
2.  A Functional Capacity Evaluation
3.  A Defence Medical Exam Cancellation Fee
4.  Outside Legal Fees
5.  Mediation Administration Fees
6.  Photocopy Charges
7.  Legal Alternative Courier Charges
8.  Office Supplies

Document Disclosure Photocopy Expenses Ordered at $0.30 Per Page


Rules 7-1(16) and (17) deal with producing relevant documents to opposing litigants and costs associated with doing so.  Reasons for judgement were released last week by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, dealing with the rate of reasonable photocopy charges.
In last week’s case (Perone v. Baron) the Plaintiff was involved in a motor vehicle collision.  In the course of his lawsuit ICBC requested copies of relevant documents agreeing to pay $.30 per page for photocopy expenses.  The Plaintiff agreed to produce the documents but insisted that $.35 should be paid per page.  The difference was ultimately resolved via Court Application with Master McDiarmid providing the following reasons:

33] I accept what Esson J.A. wrote, namely that photocopying charges under Rule 7(1)(16) are more closely akin to what would be allowed in a solicitor-client costs review. I also note, though, that at the time Giulianiwas decided, just over 14 years ago, the registrar’s rate was only 60% of what it is now.

[34] After reviewing the facts before me and the law presented to me, I consider that the rate of 30¢ per page is appropriate. I order the production of the documents by the respondent on the terms sought. Paragraphs 1 and 2 of the application are granted.

Photocopy Disbursements Allowed at $0.25 per Page in ICBC Claim


(Update October 2, 2012The below post was upheld on appeal in reasons for judgement released today)
Reasons for judgement were released last week by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, addressing reasonable photocopy expenses in a bill of disbursements.
In the recent case (Chow v. Nguyen) the parties could not agree to the reasonableness of various disbursements incurred in the prosecution of a personal injury claim.  In the course of the lawsuit the Plaintiff’s lawyer made 7,231 photocopies and claimed disbursements at $0.25 per copy.  ICBC argued this was unreasonable.  Master McDiarmid disagreed and allowed this disbursement as presented.  In doing so the Court provided the following reasons:

[4]Counsel for the defendant and third party also objected to the photocopy charges. She accepted plaintiff’s counsel’s representation that the 7,231 photocopies were in fact made. There was no argument that the photocopying was not necessary or proper; rather, the argument was that the 25¢ per page was excessive given the actual cost of photocopying. When assessing costs, a registrar must determine which disbursements have been necessarily or properly incurred in the conduct of the proceedings, and I must allow a reasonable amount for those disbursements (Rule 14-1(5) of the Supreme Court Civil Rules (the “Civil Rules”)).

[5]Pursuant to Rule 14-1(1) of the Civil Rules, I am to assess costs in accordance with Appendix B. Administrative Notice 5 effective July 1, 2010 directs that photocopying charges may be allowed at 25¢ per page on a party/party bill of costs. This amount is a guideline only. If it is shown that the actual cost was or should have been different from the guideline charges, the amounts allowed on an assessment may differ from the guideline amounts.

[6]The actual cost of photocopying is difficult to determine, in as much as it involves a combination of fixed costs, per page costs, and labour costs. There was no evidence before me to show what the actual cost was. I find that in the circumstances of this case, the number of photocopies was both necessary and proper, and I allow the photocopying charges as claimed in the amount of $1,807.75, plus applicable taxes.

This case is also worth reviewing for the Court’s discussion of document binding charges (dismissed as overhead) and the cost of fairly expensive expert reports which were allowed as being reasonable given the circumstanses of the case.

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ERIK
MAGRAKEN

Personal Injury Lawyer

When not writing the BC Injury Law Blog, Erik is the managing partner at MacIsaac & Company, based in Victoria, B.C. He is also involved with combative sports regulatory issues and authors the Combat Sports Law Blog.

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