Clydes could face Tribunal in JJB fixing
Clyde & Co could be heading to the Competition Appeals Tribunal if it fails to agree fees racked up from its involvement in a price-fixing claim against retailer JJB Sports.The case, which saw Clydes acting for consumer group Which? in a group action against JJB Sports over fixing the prices of replica football shirts, settled in January but Clydes has yet to be paid.The firm was unable to agree on costs with JJB Sports during the settlement negotiations and it is understood that JJB, which was represented by DLA Piper competition partner Martin Rees, viewed Clydes' fees as disproportionately high. Costs are thought to stand at approximately £1m including fees for Clydes and counsel, disbursements and take into account an uplift as a result of a conditional fee arrangement. However, the case secured just £100,000 in compensation for consumers.The issue will move to the Competition Appeals Tribunal in the coming weeks if parties fail to reach an agreement.Clydes dispute resolution partner Julian Connerty, who led the case, told Legal Week: "We are still discussing with JJB Sports the question as to what part of our costs they are going to pay. These things are relative but a case like this is always going to cost a lot. It was a complex case, the first of its kind. The amount at stake was enormous and it entailed a lot of administration especially finding and handling the claimants."He added: "As to our recovery for costs, it is still open to discussion but no part of it will be paid by the consumer or Consumer Association."
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