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The changes to the Civil Procedure Rules and Practice Directions below are applicable from 6 April 2021. The listed below is of the main point of relevance and does not coinstitute the sole limited amount of changes. ASV Law aims to provide useful updates regarding further changes as an information service.

Changes to the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2021:

  1. Service outside of the jurisdiction – permission is no longer required from the court when a claim form is served in cross border cases where reliance on ‘Choice of Court Agreements’ was sought. This amendment flows from the UK’s exit from the EU and aims to remove requirements that are no longer practical in this regard. [For the process necessary before the UK left the EU, see our article “Service of a Legal Claim Outside the Jurisdiction’]
  2. Foreign Judgements –change to CPR 70 now indicates that foreign judgments must be registered in order to be enforceable, including those from EU member states, and will be treated as if they were a judgement of the High Court or County Court. A judgement is registered for enforecement by a court when it is ordered to be enforced or permission is given to enforece.
  3. Coronavirus – a new provision makes it easier for the courts to function in emergency situations such as the current pandemic [for a more detailed look at how trial procedure has chnaged as a result of Coronavirus, see our article “The future of Arbitration and the use of technology beying 2020”]
  4. Affidavits – a change to CPR 32.12 now ensures that affidavits may no longer be used as collateral evidence outside of proceedings in which they are served, following the decision in Official Receiver v Skeene.
  5. Offers under Part 36 offer are now assumed to include all interests, even if not explicitly stated in offer as per King v City of London.
  6. Witnesses – CPR 1 is amended to allow for fairer participation of vulnerable parties in civil proceedings and makes cost provisions for work and expenses incurred as a reuslt.

Changes to the 127th Practice Direction update:

Additional noteworthy changes are as follows:

  1. CPR PD 51O extended the Electronic working pilot scheme for another year until 6 April 2022.
  2. CPR PD 51U was amended in accordance with user response in order to better the Disclosure pilot for the business and property courts.
  3. CPR PD 57AC now ensures that trial witness statements in the business and property courts contain the facts of the case.

For continued access to legal updates and news as it happens, follow ASV Law on Linkedin or visit our website at asvlaw.com. We note that all articles referred to herein were correct at the time of publishing.