Participation of vulnerable parties in civil litigation: split trials and stays (AXX v. Zajac) – Exchange Chambers

‘AXX (A protected party by his litigation friend XRE) v. Zajac [2022] EWHC 2463 is the first reported case in the High Court (KBD) concerning the ‘new’ CPR Practice Direction 1A which requires the court to take all proportionate measures to address any impediment to a party’s participation in proceedings caused by their ‘vulnerability’. Master McCloud granted an application made on behalf of the Claimant (who was a protected party due to a psychotic condition which had arisen after his accident) for a trial of causation as a preliminary issue on the basis that, if successful at that stage, the Claimant could seek interim funding for treatment to address his psychiatric symptoms and allow him to participate fully in the subsequent quantum trial. The Master also refused an application from the Defendant for an ‘unless’ order (whereby the claim would be stayed unless the Claimant cooperated with examinations to be performed by the Defendant’s instructed medical experts) because of concerns about the Claimant’s capacity to consent to examination. This decision illustrates the important role that PD1A has in shaping case management decisions to protect the interests of parties with vulnerabilities.’

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Exchange Chambers, 22nd December 2022

Source: www.exchangechambers.co.uk

Civil legal aid review ‘to report in 2024’ – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted January 6th, 2023 in civil justice, legal aid, Ministry of Justice, news by tracey

‘The Ministry of Justice has finally set the ball rolling on its major review of the civil legal aid sector. However, the timetable suggests any measures to save the shrinking sector may not be implemented until late 2024 at the earliest, in the likely runup to the next general election.’

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Law Society's Gazette, 5th January 2023

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Access denied: The state of the justice system in England and Wales in 2022 – The Bar Council

Posted November 28th, 2022 in barristers, budgets, civil justice, criminal justice, legal aid, Ministry of Justice, news by tracey

‘Access denied: The state of the justice system in England and Wales in 2022.’

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The Bar Council, 25th November 2022

Source: www.barcouncil.org.uk

Open Justice : Court Reporting In The Digital Age – Transparency Project

Posted November 15th, 2022 in civil justice, family courts, law reports, media, news by sally

‘On 1 November 2022 the House of Commons Justice Committee published their report : Open Justice: court reporting in the digital age.’

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Transparency Project, 12th November 2022

Source: transparencyproject.org.uk

MPs warn court system is failing to support public understanding of justice system – Local Government Lawyer

Posted November 10th, 2022 in civil justice, criminal justice, judgments, news, reports by sally

‘The Justice Committee has called for a “renewed focus” in the court system to remove barriers to the media and members of the public coming to court proceedings.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 9th November 2022

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Rule makers to give ‘early notice’ of fixed costs rules – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted November 7th, 2022 in civil justice, civil procedure rules, costs, news by tracey

‘The final procedural rules for next April’s extension of fixed recoverable costs to civil claims worth up to £100,000 will be made public as soon as possible, Lord Justice Birss said last week.’

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Law Society’s Gazette, 7th November 2022

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Vulnerable parties and civil proceedings – Family Law

Posted October 31st, 2022 in civil justice, civil procedure rules, news, witnesses by tracey

‘The internet is replete with humorous courtroom exchanges – genuine or apocryphal – between hapless lawyers and intelligent, sarcastic witnesses but the reality is that advocates come prepared with plenty of experience and usually know what they are going to ask. In contrast, most parties and witnesses in civil claims have probably never been inside a court and their “preparation” for the experience itself may have involved watching multiple episodes of Kavanagh QC or similar, largely unrealistic, courtroom dramas.’

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Family Law, 28th October 2022

Source: www.familylaw.co.uk

Government legacy bill risks breaches of human rights law, committee finds – The Independent

‘Proposed Government legislation to deal with the legacy of Northern Ireland’s Troubles risks widespread breaches of human rights law, a Westminster committee has found.’

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The Independent, 26th October 2022

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Solicitor engaged in ‘pathological’ litigation handed civil restraint order – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted October 10th, 2022 in civil justice, injunctions, law firms, news, solicitors, vexatious litigants by tracey

‘A law firm has been barred by the High Court from making any further court applications for at least 18 months after failing to heed warnings to stop.’

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Law Society's Gazette, 7th October 2022

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Government to launch review of civil legal aid sustainability – Legal Futures

Posted October 6th, 2022 in civil justice, legal aid, Ministry of Justice, news by sally

‘The government is to launch a review of civil legal aid in the coming weeks, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has confirmed.’

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Legal Futures, 4th October 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Time taken to get civil cases to trial reaches all-time high – Legal Futures

‘The time between issue and trial for fast- and multi-track claims has hit 75 weeks, the longest this century, according to government figures published yesterday.’

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Legal Futures, 2nd September 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Claim against solicitors was attempt to relitigate private prosecution – Legal Futures

‘A professional negligence claim against a firm of solicitors in the North-East has been thrown out as an attempt to relitigate an unsuccessful private prosecution.’

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Legal Futures, 3rd August 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Domestic abusers barred from cross-examining victims in family and civil courts – Ministry of Justice

‘Victims of domestic abuse can be spared from being cross-examined by their alleged attackers in family and civil courts under measures coming into force today (21 July 2022).’

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Ministry of Justice, 21st July 2022

Source: www.gov.uk

News focus: CJC forum brainstorms costs reform – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted July 18th, 2022 in civil justice, costs, news by tracey

‘Costs lawyers convened at the Civil Justice Council last week to discuss another overhaul. Delegates offered robust opinions, but there was little consensus.’

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Law Society's Gazette, 18th July 2022

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

No diplomatic immunity in modern slavery cases, Supreme Court rules – BBC News

‘The UK Supreme Court has ruled that diplomats cannot hide behind immunity to exploit workers, in a victory for campaigners against modern slavery.’

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BBC News, 7th July 2022

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

New Judgment: Basfar v Wong [2022] UKSC 20 – UKSC Blog

‘The Appellant (a national of the Philippines) is a migrant domestic worker who worked in the household of the Respondent, a diplomat representing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the United Kingdom. Ms Wong claims to be a victim of human trafficking who was forced to work for Mr Basfar and his family in circumstances of modern slavery after they brought her with them to the UK in August 2016.’

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UKSC Blog, 6th July 2022

Source: ukscblog.com

Civil Justice Council kicks off ‘holistic’ review of costs – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted July 4th, 2022 in civil justice, consultations, costs, news by tracey

‘The Civil Justice Council has set in motion a possible shake-up of the civil costs regime with the start of a wide-ranging consultation. The judicial-led group will look at the key areas of costs budgeting, guideline hourly rates, the impact of digitisation and portals, and the consequences of the extension of fixed recoverable costs.’

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Law Society's Gazette, 1st July 2022

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

CJC begins process for major reform of costs regime – Legal Futures

Posted July 1st, 2022 in civil justice, consultations, costs, news by tracey

‘A rethought costs system that puts digitisation, vulnerable court users and a properly functioning civil justice system at its heart is the goal of a Civil Justice Council (CJC) working party, which yesterday began consulting on four key areas for possible reform.’

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Legal Futures, 1st July 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Online rule committee will be catalyst for digital justice, says Birss – Legal Futures

‘The work of the new Online Procedure Rules Committee (OPRC) will help connect the whiplash portal and other pre-action regimes to the court system electronically, the deputy head of civil justice has said.’

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Legal Futures, 9th June 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Senior judges back push to move High Court cases to the regions – Legal Futures

Posted May 31st, 2022 in choice of forum, civil justice, lists, news by sally

‘The High Court has transferred another case from London to Leeds at the same time as senior judges emphasised that the location of the lawyers is not a trump card in determining venue.’

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Legal Futures, 31st May 2022

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk