It was always ambitious to try creating a set of civil procedure rules which worked effectively in every court and for every kind of case. I wonder what proportion of the CPR consists of exceptions, derogations and special cases inserted to try and make the requirements fit every circumstance.
Disclosure emphasises the difficulties of rule-making for all. When we were trying to persuade the Rule Committee to adopt the new disclosure practice direction in 2010, most of the compromises (not all of them beneficial to anyone) arose from attempts to accommodate smaller cases in rules whose primary target was the most document-heavy ones. It is right to make those compromises, but it is daft to underestimate the difficulties which result.
The Disclosure Pilot had the advantage that its scope was limited to the Business and Property Courts. Even that selectivity left a wide range of cases to be covered by the pilot. To many, some of the pilot’s provisions are too onerous for any case, despite the need to control the bloat of so many disclosure exercises.
The advantage of a pilot is that one has the chance to tweak it, albeit with the potential for every tweak to upset somebody or, at least, to make confusion worse confounded. What we need is a webinar with authoritative speakers on a mission to explain.
That is just what we have coming up. On 15 November, the ACEDS UK Chapter is producing a webinar called Navigating the Turbulence Experienced by the Disclosure Pilot – A Live Q&A to Discuss Improvements, which will cover how the Disclosure Pilot Scheme has evolved since 2019.
The agenda includes:
- Introduction of the scheme, background and the definition of models
- A discussion of the latest extension on 1 November, the current positioning, and why further change was necessary, with a special focus on Less Complex Claims and the structure around them.
- The changes to the List of Issues for Disclosure, Model C and Model D, focusing on pre-CMC timetables and Narrative documents.
- Multi-Party Cases – the antithesis of Less Complex Claims, problem areas and changes.
- Changes to Disclosure Guidance Hearings and next steps.
The speakers are:
Ed Crosse – Partner, Simmons & Simmons LLP
Deputy Master Marsh former Chief Master of the Chancery Division
Charlotte Hill – Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP
The moderator is Melina Efstathiou – Head of Litigation Technology, Eversheds Sutherland.