Parties Must Engage in Proceedings Properly

The High Court has emphasised the need for parties to engage personally with the disclosure process - Sheeran and others v Chokri and others [2021].

One party sought to kick out the other party for not disclosing evidence properly. The judge confirmed the two-stage approach to be used in such applications. First the court should identify whether there has been a failure adequately to comply with the order for Disclosure and then consider whether making some curative order is both reasonable and proportionate. There must also be something to show that there was a likelihood (as opposed to a possibility) that further relevant documents existed.

In this case the disclosure was undertaken not by the party personally but by his manager. Partly because of this lack of engagement with the disclosure process the court ordered the first claimant to search for and produce certain additional documents. The judge also ordered the first claimant to make a witness statement stating that he had personally satisfied himself that his disclosure obligations had been met. Even very busy people must take responsibility for their own disclosure.

David Denovan-Smith is a solicitor in our dispute resolution/litigation team and can be contacted on

Added: 01 Apr 2022 10:03

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