In O’Brien v Shorrock and MIB the Court considered whether the incorrect date on a CFA constituted a breach of the rules that required relief from sanction. The CFA in question was made on 21st October 2009 but stated to have retrospective effect to 6th November 2008. The Notice of Funding stated that the date of the CFA was 6th November 2008.

The Judge found that there had been a breach of the rules in that the incorrect date of the CFA had been given on the Notice of Funding but that relief form sanction would be granted. In doing so he allowed a reduced success fee for the period prior the CFA being signed and also suggested that in these circumstances solicitors should give the date that the CFA is signed and also say when it was to have effect from if that was an earlier date.

If you are acting on a CFA that has retrospective effect to a date earlier than the date that the CFA was signed it would be a good idea to check that the correct date has been given in the Notice of Funding and possibly to also advise your opponents if the CFA is effective from an earlier date.