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1929.Present: Dalton and Maartensz JJ.
JAYAWARDENE v. KARUNARATNE.
S3—D. C. Negombo, 2,366.
Costs—Taxation of bill—Fee for junior advocate—Scale of fee payablein District Court—Civil Procedure Code, Schedule III.
The fee that may be taxed as having been paid to a junioradvocate in the District Court is not limited to the brief fee.
Where the trial lasted only one day, a fee for a second consulta-tion cannot be allowed.
^^PPEAL from an order of the District Judge of Negombo.
Croos da Brera, for appellant.
July 29, 1929. Maartensz J.—
This is an appeal from an order of the District Judge of Negombomade under section 214 of the Civil Procedure Code regardingcertain items of the defendant’s bill of costs which were disallowedby the taxing officer and referred to the Court for decision.
Three advocates were engaged in the case, but .at different times,so that the fees of only two advocates have been charged for at thesame time.
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The learned District Judge has on a construction of note 31989.
appended to the “ Scale of Fees to be paid to Advooates in theDistrict Courts ” set out in the Civil Procedure Code confirmed J.the taxing officer’s disallowance of the fees charged for a junioradvocate except the brief fee.e.
The scale sets out the fees to be paid to advocates as ‘ ‘ retainer ’ ’ Karurwratmfor “ advising action, defence, or appeal,” for ” settling pleadings,
&o.,” as " consultation fee," for “ opposing special motions ” andas “ brief fee.”
The third note at the foot of the table runs as follows:—" Thebrief fee of-a Junior Advocate, where two Advocates are engaged,will be half of the Senior Advocate’s brief fee.”
The learned District Judge is of opinion that the effect of thisnote is to limit a junior advocate to a brief fee only.
I am unable to agree with this opinion.
It appears to be merely intended to limit a junior advocate’sbrief fee to half the senior advocate’s brief fee, no distinction beingmade between a junior and senior advocate’s fees in respect to theother items set out in the scale.
The District Judge observes that the principle of allowing ajunior advocate only a brief fee is in accordance with the practicein his Court since its inception. But it is not in accordance withthe practice followed in the District Courts of Colombo and Kandy,where we were informed by the District Judges of those Courtsthat it is not the practice to limit a junior advocate to a brief feeonly.
The practice followed in those Courts confirms my opinion as tothe meaning of the third note.
I am therefore of opinion that the fees of the junior advocatewhich were struck off by the taxing officer should have been allowed.
Another item disallowed was the charge made for a secondconsultation. Considering the nature of the case and that thetrial lasted only one day I am of opinion that the charge was rightlydisallowed.
In the result I set aside the order of the learned District Judgedisallowing the charges made on account of (1) Mr. Yogaratnam’sfees for advising defence, advising appeal, and settling petition ofappeal, (2) Mr. P. S. P. Jayetilleke’s fees for advising defence andsettling answer. The District Judge allowed one of the fees paidfor advising defence, but the judgment does not state whichadvocate’s fee was allowed.
Mr. R. F. P. Jayetilleke has given a receipt for Rs. 157.50, whichincludes the amount paid to him as a retaining fee, and I am ofopinion the fee was properly included in the bill of costs and I setaside the order of the District Judge disallowing the charge.
JAYAWARDEDE v. KARUNARATNE