WEDNESDAY LAW REPORT: Entitlement to Recover Fees of Taxation Expert ; 7 DECEMBER 2005 Agassi V Robinson (Inspector of Taxes) ([2005] EWCA Civ 1507) Court of Appeal, Civil Division (Lords Justice Brooke, Lord Justice Dyson and Lord Justice Carnwath) 2 December 2005

Article excerpt

Whilst there was no entitlement to recover costs as a disbursement in respect of work done by a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation which would normally have been done by a solicitor who had been instructed to conduct a tax appeal, it did not necessarily follow that there was no entitlement to recover costs in respect of ancillary assistance provided the appeal. It might be appropriate to allow at least part of the fees as a disbursement.

The Court of Appeal considered the question of costs, following Andr Agassi's successful appeal against an assessment to income tax.

Mr Agassi was a well-known professional tennis player who at all material times was resident in the United States. A question arose as to whether he could be assessed to income tax under section 556 of the Income and Corporation Taxes Act 1988 in respect of payments connected with his activities in the United Kingdom as a sportsman. The Special Commissioners and the judge held that he could, but the Court of Appeal allowed his appeal (see [2005] STC 303).

Tenon Media, who were experts in the field of tax law, had acted for the appellant for many years. Christopher Mills, of Tenon, was a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation. In that capacity he was licensed to instruct counsel under the Bar's Licensed Access Scheme (formerly called BarDIRECT), and he had done so in the present case for the purposes of the appeals to the High Court and the Court of Appeal.

Mr Agassi wished to recover the costs he had incurred in retaining TM's services, but the Revenue disputed his entitlement to do so.

Patrick Way and Nicola Shaw (Christopher Mills, Tenon Media) for the appellant; Bruce Carr (Solicitor for Revenue and Customs) for the Revenue; Anthony Speaight QC and Ron Chatterjee (Bar Council) as intervener; Richard Drabble QC and David Holland (Law Society) as intervener. …