tWENTY YEARS OF THE CIVIL PROCEDURE RULES: ALL THAT TIME AND THEY HAVE MADE FEW FRIENDS
I have already done a post on the 20th anniversary of the Civil Procedure Rules on the 26th April. In an effort to find supporters I tried again. The Civil Procedure Rules, it appears, has very few friends…
Let’s all start referring to claimants as plaintiffs again .. and bring back the writ … abolish costs budgeting … and a few other things ….
Five reforms to make the CPR work better.
1. Judges to step back from case management: they no longer have the time or resources to do this properly. If they ever had.
2. Cost budgeting: a wholesale waste of time and money (in current form) Lawyers spending thousands of pounds and hours of court time arguing about fantasy costs numbers, the bulk of which probably won’t be incurred.
3.Denton: let’s all stop pretending anyone cares about the mythical ‘three tests’. The only test that matters is ‘all the circumstances of the case’, which pre-dates Mitchell anyway.
4. Cost budgets: abolish the rule that prevents a party recovering any costs if they are late with their costs budget. 21 days before? The Judge won’t have had a chance to look at it until 21 *minutes* before the hearing.
5. Introduce a rebuttable presumption that if the court loses the file or can’t accommodate a trial due to lack of judges, the MOJ pays the costs thrown away as a consequence.
Let alone the stress of it all in ensuring everything necessary is in place in time!! How much judge time has been taken with this? The built in delay for litigants starting with the transfer of cases to the appropriate court before then waiting for the CCMC! Aaargh!
1 Reinstate Legal aid for PI I know not a CPR but would do no end of good 2 Align CPR 39.3 with Part 13 its inflexibility is inimical to justice & make it clear it only applies to trials & not where a claim otherwise determined 3 Abolish costs budgeting 4 Fund courts properly!
Case management has not been a wholesale success . The judiciary and court service are demoralised and the CPR was a sledgehammer to crack a nut. We now have a Nissan Micra legal system made in a factory to be closed by Brexit!
The proliferation of documents that are required for even the most bog standard hearings began with the CPR: these days you’re consider ill-prepared if you don’t attend with a sheaf of case summaries, lists of issues, trial timetables, position statements, over-long skeletons.
The CPR were substantially responsible for the devaluing of interlocutory oral advocacy as a separate skill.
Ceremonial burning and return to RSC and CCR !
…and start the reforms again, knowing what we know now about the traps of “just one more rule to make it all better”
Plus accept, for example, (1) that “Oral examination” was fine and far slicker than “Order to obtain information from judgment debtor” and (2) replacing “interlocutory” with “interim” – to get rid of Latin words – doesn’t inspire confidence !
And bring back discovery instead of disclosure – one of those stupid change-the-name-and-it-will-get-better ideas
Do an article on Why change is not always for the better.
Plaintiffs much less ‘claimy’ sounding
I agree with the resurrection of ‘Plaintiff’ but not the Writ. Any document that begins with the words “By Elizabeth the Second” strikes the fear of God in me before I’ve even read the first paragraph
I would vote to abolish costs budgeting