General civil restraint orders
General civil restraint orders

The following Dispute Resolution practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • General civil restraint orders
  • What is a general civil restraint order (GCRO)?
  • Who can make a GCRO?
  • What is the test for making a GCRO?
  • Will the court exercise its discretion to make a GCRO?
  • What is the effect and duration of a GCRO?
  • Can a GCRO be extended?
  • What are the consequences of breaching a GCRO?

General civil restraint orders

This Practice Note should be read in conjunction with Practice Note: Civil restraint orders which deals with general information on civil restraint orders (CROs) that is common to all types of CRO. Also see Practice Notes: Limited civil restraint orders, Extended civil restraint orders, and Civil proceedings orders against vexatious litigants for information on other orders that can be made against vexatious litigants.

What is a general civil restraint order (GCRO)?

A GCRO may be made where a party persists in issuing claims or making applications that are totally without merit (TWM), in circumstances where an extended civil restraint (ECRO) would not be sufficient or appropriate (CPR PD 3C, para 4.1).

It prevents the party from making any further applications or claims in specified courts without the prior permission of the court (CPR PD 3C, para 4.2).

An example of a GCRO is attached to CPR PD 3C (Form N19B) (CPR PD 3C, para 5.3).

Who can make a GCRO?

CPR PD 3C, para 4.1 provides that the following have the power to make a GCRO:

  1. a judge of the Court of Appeal

  2. a judge of the High Court, or

  3. a designated civil judge or their appointed deputy in the County Court

Regarding which judges will be considered to be ‘a judge of the High Court’, see Practice Note: Extended civil restraint orders—Who can make an ECRO?, which

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