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In May 2016, a working group was established to examine the disclosure process in civil proceedings in response to concerns from court users and the profession regarding what was perceived as excess costs, scale and complexity of the process.
The Disclosure Working Group (chaired by Lady Justice Gloster), identified a number of key defects in the current disclosure regime for the Business and Property courts in England and Wales and concluded that a ‘wholesale cultural change’ was required. On 31 July 2018, the Disclosure Working Group announced that the CPR Committee gave final approval for a two-year disclosure pilot scheme on Friday 13 July 2018, and ministerial consent was given in September 2018.
The mandatory pilot scheme will apply across the Business and Property Courts in the Rolls Building in London and in Bristol, Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Liverpool. From the commencement date (1 January 2019), the pilot will apply to existing and new proceedings, with certain exceptions (eg competition claims).
Key features of the disclosure pilot scheme are:
Subscribers of Lexis®PSL can access further information on the disclosure pilot scheme, see Practice Note: Business and Property Courts—the disclosure pilot scheme and Checklist Timetable for disclosure—Business and Property Courts disclosure pilot
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