The 47th Update of additions and amendments to the CPR has been published. The majority of the amendments came into force on 1 October including a new Part 6 and Practice Direction (PD6) which implement significant changes to the rules on service. A summary of the amendments is set out below:

  • Part 6 - (i) the claimant must dispatch the claim form within 4 months of issue, rather than it being received by the respondent in that time; (ii) all deemed service to be on a business day; (iii) the claim form will be deemed to be served 2 business days after dispatch by whichever means of dispatching; (iv) the court has power to order retrospectively that service by an alternative method or at an alternative place is valid; and (v) parties will be allowed to give an address for service for documents other than the claim form anywhere in the UK.
  • A large number of other Parts and Practice Directions have been amended as a result of the changes to Part 6.
  • PD40E and PD52 are revised to reflect the current practice of electronic distribution of judgments before handing down.
  • Parts 43-47 and their accompanying practice directions are amended to enable costs orders in civil cases where the successful party was represented (whether wholly or partly) by a lawyer(s) pro bono. Such costs orders will be directed to a charity prescribed by order made by the Lord Chancellor to those who provide, organise or facilitate the provision of free legal advice and assistance. Parts 3, 36 and 38 are also amended as a consequence of these changes.
  • A new PD 51 - Automatic Orders Pilot Scheme is enacted which supplements Parts 26 and 28 and provides for a pilot scheme to be carried out for one year in five county courts to assess the effect of amending rules to allow certain orders to be made administratively, for example, automatic orders where a party fails to file an allocation questionnaire.
  • PD77 is amended to make provision for the claim form or applications to vary a Serious Crime Prevention Order to include details of any third party who is likely to be significantly adversely affected by the making or varying of such an order.

For full details of the new Part 6, PD6 and the other CPR amendments, see the Ministry of Justice website at

http://www.justice.gov.uk/civil/procrules_fin/