Coulson v News Group Newspapers Limited 2011 EWHC 3482 (QB) Division

Andy Coulson sued NGN for a declaration that a clause in his compromise agreement obliged NGN to pay the costs and expenses he incurred in defending his criminal allegations.  These allegations arose out of the phone hacking scandal.  The High Court dismissed his claim.  The indemnity for costs was in standard format which provided for payment of his reasonable professional costs and expenses incurred after his termination date which arose from him having to defend or appeal in any administrative regulatory or judicial or quasi-judicial proceedings as a result of his being editor of the News of the World only.  

Key Point: The High Court decision highlights the importance of accurate drafting of contract terms and provisions in compromise agreements where an indemnity for costs is agreed.