Skip to Content

Decisions of the Superior Courts of New South Wales, 1788-1899

Rowe v. Cullen [1829] NSWSupC 16

taxing of costs - barrister's fees, not recoverable

Supreme Court of New South Wales

Dowling J., 17 March 1829

Source: Australian, 20 March 1829

Rowe v. Cullen. -  This was an action to recover 40l., due to plaintiff for services performed in his joint capacity of barrister, solicitor, attorney, and proctor for the defendant.

Mr. R.'s clerk, the only witness examined, having deposed to the correctness of the several charges, and the defendant's counsel having replied, the learned Judge in summing up the case observed, that he never knew in the course of his experience in England, an instance of either a barrister or physician recovering a sum of money for fees.  In those two honorable professions such a course was never adopted, or presumed to be necessary.  His Honor was of opinion, that plaintiff could not recover the amount claimed in his capacity of barrister, although he might recover a sum reasonably supposed to have been paid by him as an attorney to counsel, by way of a retaining fee.  His Honor then commented on the other various items of plaintiff's bill, and left the case to the Assessors, who, after a short deliberation, found for the plaintiff -- damages, 34l. 19s 7d.

Assessors, James Busby and Alexander McLeod, Esquires.

For plaintiff, Mr. C. D. Moore -- for defendant, Mr. Norton.

Published by the Division of Law, Macquarie University