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Small Claims


In January 2022 the Civil Justice Council published its final report on The Resolution of Small Claims, following an earlier interim report.

The Report recommends that cases for £500 or less that are not housing disrepair, road traffic or personal injury court procedure should be amended.

The new proposals involve:-

-        compulsory attendance at mediation appointment or other ADR once a defence is filed

-        determination by telephone or remote hearing or

-        determined by reading the papers; and normally

-         final hearing of no more than one hour in length including judgment; then

-        a restricted right of appeal.

It is also recommended that the court service should improve signposting/guidance for potential litigants in a single part of the Court Service website and give better information about what mediation is and how it can work.

There are various other proposals aimed at widening the court process in theory making it easier for cases to be brought online using a specific “pre-action protocol” for claims under £500.

Dispute resolution hearing. Current restrictions on the use of preliminary hearings set out in CPR 27.6(1) should be relaxed to allow their more flexible use.

The Master of the Rolls, Sir Geoffrey Vos believes that "it will become easier for litigants to begin claims online", and highlighted the importance of data collection to inform future improvements "across the entire judicial landscape".

Improvement is certainly needed as parts of the court process are currently in chaos.

(With thanks to Practical Law)

For advice on this, or any other litigation matter, contact the Employment and Litigation Team on 01905 723 561 or email: david.denovan-smith@smesolicitors.co.uk

Added: 21 Feb 2022 12:52


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