Without prejudice communications
Without prejudice communications

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

  • Without prejudice communications
  • Without prejudice rule
  • What makes a communication 'without prejudice'?
  • Exceptions to the without prejudice rule
  • Calderbank offers—without prejudice save as to costs ('wpsatc')
  • Without prejudice communications at a mediation
  • Cross-border mediation evidence
  • Waiving without prejudice privilege
  • Without prejudice—practical tips

The UK has voted to leave the EU and this will take place on exit day as defined in section 20 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018. This has implications for practitioners when dealing with disclosure. The Civil Procedure Rules 1998 (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019, SI 2019/521, which will come into force on exit day, provide that references to CPR 78 will be omitted from CPR 31 and in relation to a mediation to which the Cross-Border Mediation (EU Directive) Regulations 2011, SI 2011/1133 applied before exit day, CPR 31.3 continues to apply on and after exit day as if the amendments to that rule made by the regulations had not been made. For information about the changes, including any related practice direction changes made by the 107th practice direction update, see Practice Note: Brexit—CPR changes—Part 31—Disclosure and inspection and Brexit—CPR changes—Part 78—European procedures.

This Practice Note explains the without prejudice rule which affects the admissibility of evidence relating to genuine settlement negotiations and describes what makes oral or written communications fall within, and outside, this principle of privilege. It looks at whether pre-action communications can be without prejudice, the relevance of expressly labelling communications as without prejudice and the position on chains of communications. There are exceptions to the general rule which result in WP communications becoming admissible, such as