In Bates, the judge rounded off his judgment with a costs warning. He listed both parties' procedural failures in the case, which included: "failing to respond to proposed directions for two months; failing even to consider e-disclosure questionnaires; failing to lodge required documents with the court; failing to lodge documents in good time; refusing to disclose obviously relevant documents; resisting any extension to the 'cut-off' date for entries of new claimants on the Group Register; and threatening pointless interlocutory skirmishes".
In clear disapproval of the parties' conduct in the proceedings, the judge said:
"Such behaviour simply does not begin to qualify as either cost-effective, efficient, or being in accordance with the overriding objective. A fundamental change of attitude by the legal advisers involved in this group litigation is required. A failure to heed this warning will result in draconian costs orders."
Bates is further evidence of judicial robustness when enforcing the court's overriding objective of dealing with cases justly and at proportionate cost (under Civil Procedure Rule, Part 1). The judge reminded the parties that they have a duty to help the court to further the overriding objective and must co-operate between themselves, be constructive and conduct the case efficiently.