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Donald Ross v. PGS Production A.S. [2009] CSOH45


On 2 June 2000 the pursuer was injured whilst employed as a deck foreman on an off-shore installation. The action was settled by extra judicial agreement. In this opposed motion enrolled on behalf of the pursuer, the pursuer sought the certification of two engineers as skilled witnesses for the pursuer under under Rule of Court 42.13. Further, the pursuer sought an additional fee under Rule of Court 42.14. It was submitted on behalf of the pursuer that this had been a substantial demages claim and a very complicated accident where there was limited evidence regarding the actual circumstances of the accident itself and, as such, there was a requirement to instruct both engineers. Further, an additional fee was sought, in particular, with regard to the complexity of the cause. It was submitted on behalf of the defenders that there was no need for expert engineers to be instructed and it was unfair for the defenders to have to pay for two reports, simply because one of the engineers did not complete the work he had been instructed to carry out. Here the court considered whether it was reasonable to employ the witnesses to make investigations or to report for any purpose as required under Rule 42.13 (2) and whether an additional fee was appropriate having regard to the the allegedly complex nature of the dispute on the merits, and for the need of advice from a consulting engineer.