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COP E-bill – Version 2 - Important Update!

We wanted to provide an important update in relation to introduction of the next version of the COP E-bill – version 2 (V2).  This article will be of interest to practitioners within the Court of Protection, professional deputies and those assisting professional deputies.

Many of you will have seen a flyer recently provided by the Senior Courts Costs Office (SCCO), advising that as from 4 September 2023, any version 1 COP E-bills (V1), will be rejected.  We first learned of this a couple of weeks ago.

The updated version of the bill introduces a number of minor changes to the bill, particularly to the initial information contained on sheet one of the E-bill.  There are also further smaller changes introduced throughout the E-bill.

We have been taking steps to ensure we will be ready for these changes, and are awaiting the recent updates to be implemented by our cost drafting software provider.  We are assured we will be among the first to know when the updates are publicly available and we will be ensuring we are using this up to date software as soon as possible.

However, during the course of late last week, we were advised by the Association of Costs Lawyers (the ACL), of which we are a member, that concerns have been raised in relation to the tight timescales for implementation.

These representations have been acknowledged by Senior Costs Judge Gordon-Saker, who has confirmed the proposed date and notice for the transition is not sufficient.  Furthermore, he has advised no further copies of the flyer will be sent out.

Additionally, and perhaps crucially, the SCCO has been instructed by Senior Costs Judge Gordon-Saker not to reject any COP E-Bills filed in the V1 format, until a date has been agreed on when this changeover will take effect, and practitioners have been given adequate notice.

In the meantime, as detailed above, we will continue to work closely with our drafting software provider to ensure we are moved onto the V2 platform as soon as possible.

We are grateful to the ACL for their prompt action in seeking to postpone the date for the implementation of V2 of the COP E-bill.

Should you have any further queries or concerns arising in light of the above, please do not hesitate to contact us or your regular costs draftsman.

Paul Cruickshank’s, Head of Court of Protection


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