Costs barrister Paul Joseph began his career at Wragge and Co (now Gowling WLG) in Birmingham and then spent nine years in the commercial litigation department at Edge Ellison (now Squire Patton Boggs). After four years as an attorney at law in the Cayman Islands, he returned to the UK in 2005 and transferred to the Bar. He joined 3PB in January 2024 from another large chambers in Birmingham, where he had been practising for 18 years.
Paul has built up a busy practice and is an established and recognised costs specialist, consistently rated by both Legal 500 and Chambers UK. He understands the costs issues facing solicitors and clients in the current post Jackson climate. Paul recently appeared in the Court of Appeal, acting for the Home Secretary, in the landmark case of Isah -v- The Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 268 in March 2023 about costs and summary assessment. In August 2021, Paul was appointed a Deputy Costs Judge of the Senior Courts Costs Office in London.
Paul has acted for HM Government since 2010. He was instructed to advise in relation to the costs issues arising out of the many claims against the Ministry of Defence (MoD) brought by Iraqi civilians following the invasion of Iraq in 2003. He has considerable experience of issues arising out of the pre-action Protocols and the fixed cost regime. He is often instructed to appear on appeals and is frequently instructed on costs and case management hearings and detailed assessments. He appears in courts throughout England and Wales and regularly appears in the Senior Courts Costs Office and in the Court of Appeal.
Paul also accepts instructions on a Direct Access basis.
Outside of a busy work schedule, Paul enjoys playing first violin in the Stratford-upon-Avon Symphony Orchestra (where he is also a trustee) and, as a former member of the CBSO Chorus, still sings in a local Warwickshire choir.
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Paul Joseph is rated as the best costs specialist barrister in the Midlands and one of the UK's top counsel in this specialist field. He is recognised in Legal 500 and Chambers UK as a top costs specialist. In August 2021, he was appointed a Deputy Costs Judge of the Senior Courts Costs Office in London. Paul is one of the senior members of 3PB's dedicated Costs Team.
He works extensively for HM Government and, currently listed on the Attorney General’s Regional B panel, is regularly instructed by the GLD’s costs team on a wide variety of costs matters. He dealt with, for example, all the costs work in connection with claims made by Iraqi civilians against the MoD arising out of the invasion of Iraq in 2003; and similarly in relation to the MoD's actions in Afghanistan and during the Kenyan Emergency.
More recently, Paul acted in AB/X -v- Ministry of Justice in which Paul obtained an Extended Civil Restraint Order and the removal of a solicitor advocate's anonymity as well as over 20 individual costs orders (of which nearly half were indemnity orders) and 10 declarations of totally without merit.
Paul undertakes all types of costs work - across all areas of law except criminal cases - such as:
- Case and Costs Management Conferences
- Allocation Hearings (and now assignment issues)
- Wasted Costs Applications
- Security for Costs Applications
- Oral reviews of Provisional Assessments
- Detailed Assessment hearings (whether in the SCCO or anywhere else)
- Drafting Points of Dispute and Replies
- Part 36 issues
- Appeals relating to costs matters, including appeals to the Court of Appeal
R (on the application of Jerry Isah) -v- The Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 268: the extent and scope of summary assessment of costs.
AB -v- MOJ  EWHC 72 (KB): defending 4 applications for permission to appeal within detailed assessment proceedings, all of which were dismissed and declared to be totally without merit.
AB/X -v- Ministry of Justice  EWHC 1920 (KB): application to remove the anonymity granted to a solicitor advocate whom the MOJ wished to report to the SRA for serious misconduct.
R (Jawad Faqiri) -v- Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) and Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 151
AL (Albania) -v- Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 1183: whether or not the Secretary of State had delayed unreasonably.
R (Gudanaviciene) -v- Immigration and Asylum First Tier Tribunal  EWCA Civ 352: Circumstances in which the court will make an order for costs against a Tribunal or inferior court.
Rohan Ghising –v- Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 3706 (QB): Appeal concerning the recoverability of a retrospective success fee.
Assaubayevs –v- Michael Wilson and Partners Limited  EWHC 821 (QB) and  EWCA Civ 1491: Extent of the court’s supervisory jurisdiction over bodies which pretend to be recognised legal bodies.
J E Jamaica –v- Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 192: Operation of CPR Part 52.9A.
G (a child by her mother and litigation friend, M) –v- Kingston upon Hull City Council (Lawtel 01/10/13): applicability of SCCO guidelines on summary assessment to detailed assessments.
Rangos –v- Secretary of State for Innovation  EWHC 3186 (Ch): dismissal of an appeal against Costs Master’s decision to award costs against a receiving party notwithstanding that it beat an offer under CPR Part 47.19.
Tibbles –v- SIG PLC (T/A Asphaltic Roofing Supplies)  EWCA Civ 518: extent of the discretion to vary or revoke an order pursuant to CPR Part 3.1(7).
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Paul Joseph is a CEDR accredited mediator and is happy to accept instructions to act as mediator in any costs or commercial dispute.
He takes a pragmatic approach to mediations and recognizes that parties may not be able to settle a dispute on the day of the mediation itself.
“Paul Joseph is very experienced, always on top of the detail and well prepared.” Chambers UK 2023
“Paul is an exceptionally good advocate and has a great ability to cut through the fog and quickly identify the important issues in a case. He gives good advice, and his written work is always of a high standard.” Legal 500 2023
“A costs guru who revels in complicated cases.” “He is always happy to pick up the phone and give you some helpful advice.” Chambers UK 2022
“In-depth knowledge of the practice area. Ability to give clear and concise straightforward opinions.” Legal 500 2022
“Paul is always very well prepared and knows a lot about the nuts and bolts of costs work.” Chambers UK 2021
“A hugely experienced and wise costs barrister with strong technical knowledge.” Legal 500 2021
“Thorough and someone you can put a lot of confidence in. He goes beyond the call of duty in terms of dealing with each case.” Chambers UK 2020
“He has a grasp of costs work that eludes most members of the Bar.” Legal 500 2020
"A barrister who understands the brief and fights like the case is his own. A commercial lawyer by background, Paul's client care skills are also highly developed. Good in conference and good in court. Highly recommended." Chris Heitzman, Shakespeare Martineau