Judgments and orders—correcting accidental errors under the slip rule (CPR 40.12)
Judgments and orders—correcting accidental errors under the slip rule (CPR 40.12)

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

  • Judgments and orders—correcting accidental errors under the slip rule (CPR 40.12)
  • What is the slip rule?
  • When the slip rule can be used
  • When the slip rule cannot be used
  • How to apply under CPR 40.12

What is the slip rule?

The slip rule is a process by which the court may correct an accidental slip or omission in a judgment or order (see: CPR 40.12 and CPR PD 40B, paras 4.1 and 4.5). CPR 40.12 provides that the ‘court may at any time correct an accidental slip or omission in a judgment or order’. ‘Any time’ means just that ie that the power is not confined to extant orders (IC v RC—note this is a family case but the court was considering an identical provision to CPR 40.12 in the Family Procedure Rules).

This rule only covers genuine slips or omissions in the wording of a sealed court order or handed down judgment which were made by accident, eg the misdescription of a party or the incorrect insertion of a date. It cannot be used to correct substantive mistakes, for example an error in law. Substantive errors can only be corrected through the appeal process using CPR 52 (R + V Verischerung AG v Risk Insurance and Reinsurance Solutions). However, note that the key requirement in applying the slip rule is to make sure that an order reflects the intention of the court, even if the error which is being corrected might have a substantial effect such that, for example, if the court intended to order payment of £1m but in

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