Q + A with Chris Hope and Kathryn Sainty – Authors of CLEBC’s New Title Plus TC&D

Practice Point


CLEBC is proud to announce our new title Plus TC&D: The Assessment of Costs and Disbursements in Motor Vehicle Injury Litigation. Christopher J. HopeKathryn Sainty, KC

Plus TC&D is your must-have tool for preparing bills of costs under the tariff in Appendix B of the Supreme Court Civil Rules. It is the answer to all of your costs questions, from the number of units to claim under the ranges in the tariff, to which disbursements will be allowed by the assessor.

We had the opportunity to learn more about Plus TC&D from the authors Christopher J. Hope of Lindsay LLP and Kathryn Sainty, KC of Sainty Law.

Q: What inspired you to create Plus TC&D?

CH: My need to provide advice to clients about fair and reasonable positions on costs issues led me to start collecting cases, and I eventually created a lengthy document summarizing them. At one point, I had collected so many cases that writing a book seemed to be the only logical thing to do.

KS: I presented on cost issues with Chris before my retirement from the BC Supreme Court. I had not heard of Plus TC&D at the timebut was pleased to know there was a resource for people who had questions on the costs issues I faced daily as Registrar of the BCSC. I asked Chris if he would like help in reviewing the 3rd edition (in process at the time I asked). Chris was kind enough to bring me on board and we worked collaboratively to update Plus TC&D to make the advice offered even more practical.

Q: To whom do you recommend Plus TC&D? Why?

CH: The great thing about Plus TC&D is that it pays for itself within the first couple of uses. Any lawyer unsure about the law with respect to any particular tariff item or disbursement can quickly find, if not a definitive answer, at least the relevant cases to make a persuasive argument. Plus TC&D can be used by parties, lawyers, and decision-makers to quickly determine the likely result of any dispute involving costs assessment issues. Although most useful in motor vehicle litigation, Plus TC&D is relevant to all civil litigation. So, every BC lawyer involved in civil litigation should have access to Plus TC&D, either in print or online.

K: I often recommend Plus TC&D to counsel and insurance adjusters or examiners whom I work with at mediations I am conducting. I think parties can fully settle matters more effectively with knowledge of what a court might do at a costs assessment. Settling not only the tort claim, but also the costs portion of a dispute is invaluable to plaintiffs who are then able to leave mediation knowing exactly how much they will receive.

Q: What makes Plus TC&D unique from other resources on the assessment of costs and disbursements?

CH: Although some other publications touch on costs assessment issues, none is as thorough as Plus TC&D. Kathryn and I made an effort to refer to every reported decision we could find, on every tariff item and type of disbursement. No other resource even tries to be as comprehensive. In addition, Plus TC&D is organized to be easy to use and to enable you to quickly find the specific topic you are researching. You can flip to the relevant section while on the phone, in chambers, or in an assessment hearing and easily digest the relevant principles.

KS: The most unique factor is that Plus TC&D is geared at motor vehicle injury litigation. Other resources are much more general in scope. This publication is specific and, therefore, incredibly valuable to those engaged in motor vehicle litigation.

Q: How do you use Plus TC&D in your daily practice?

CH: Every time I prepare a bill of costs, review a bill of costs prepared by another lawyer, or discuss a bill of costs with a client or opposing counsel on the phone, I have Plus TC&D open on my desk.

KS: I refer to Plus TC&D at mediation when we have settled the tort claim but are struggling with the costs portion of the claim. Being able to point out areas of conflict and (possible) outcomes on an assessment often assists parties in fully resolving actions.

Q: The last edition of Plus TC&D was in 2014. What updates can readers expect in this new 4th edition?

CH+KS: There have been significant changes in the law related to costs assessment since 2014, particularly regarding disbursements such as experts, interest, private MRIs, and scanning. New registrars and masters have been making costs assessment decisions from new perspectives in the past few years, and there are many changes, some subtle, to the way costs are assessed. This new edition of Plus TC&D discusses these recent developments in detail.

Q: Why did you choose to partner with CLEBC as the new publisher of Plus TC&D?

CH+KS: There are many legal publishers in Canada, but CLEBC is the clear leader when it comes to BC-specific topics. CLEBC’s library of publications is incredibly useful for BC litigators and has a well-deserved reputation. We are extremely proud that CLEBC has taken on Plus TC&D.

Q: Anything else you would like our readers to know about Plus TC&D?

CH: Back when the price was a little lower, a senior litigator told me that Plus TC&D was “the best $75 I ever spent.” Although the price has increased, the Plus TC&D’s usefulness has also increased, and I am confident that anyone, even someone who does not practice much in motor vehicle injury litigation, will find it to be invaluable and a worthwhile investment.


For more information on Plus TC&D or to purchase your copy, please call CLEBC Customer Service at 604.893.2121 (toll-free in Canada: 1.800.663.0437) or visit us online today.