The trial period for the procedural reforms proposed by the Commercial Court Long Trials Working Party, due to finish at the end of November, has now been extended and will be kept under review until February. The pilot scheme was introduced in February 2008, implementing significant changes to Commercial Court procedure recommended by the Working Party. The amended procedure requires more focus on the key issues in the case and on increased judicial case management. Many of the Working Party's recommendations for reform are intended to apply to all Commercial Court cases, but particularly to large, complex litigation.
The Working Party has not received much substantive feedback on the reforms during the course of the trial. Last week it sent out a questionnaire to various associations and groups of professionals with a view to collating feedback by the end of January. On 2 December the City of London Law Society's (CLLS) Litigation Committee held a panel discussion on how the reforms were working in practice. Click here for a summary of some of the feedback and views about the reforms which emerged during the discussion.
An open meeting, jointly hosted by the Commercial Litigation Forum, the London Solicitors Litigation Association and Combar is to be held at our office on Monday 26 January to gather feedback on the trial. It is likely that following the meeting those changes to procedure which the judges believe to have worked well in the trial will then be incorporated as amendments to the Commercial Court Guide.