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I. Introduction

In Hong Kong, a person, a company, or the Government can be a party in a civil litigation [Bringing & Defending a Civil Case]. They may be either complainants (the party bringing the litigation) or defendants. In a litigation, each party presents their case to the court in order for the court to determine whether or not the legal rights and obligations of one (or more) of the parties are being infringed, and if so, to obtain appropriate compensation and remedy for that party.


The judge will act as an umpire and make decisions concerning the case after considering the evidence and hearing the arguments from the parties involved. The judge will normally order the losing party to pay the costs of the court action to the winning party. These court costs are in addition to and separate from whatever amount the court may order the losing party to pay the winning party as a result of the judgment. These court costs are the expenses that the winning party has had to spend on the preparation and hearing of the case, including their expenses for the solicitors and barristers representing them. The amount of these costs can be substantial, depending on various factors including the complexity of the case, the work required for preparation of the hearing and the length of the hearing.