In a surprise move, it has been announced that payments into court will be abolished as from 6 April 2007.

Previously, if a defendant wanted to make an offer to a claimant it could only obtain certain cost benefits if it actually paid the amount offered into court.

The defendant will no longer have to pay money into court to receive the cost benefits. This is great news for defendants – their cash flow will be markedly improved. It is not necessarily such good news for claimants, who will lose the comfort of knowing that the defendant at least has the money to support its offer.