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24-03-2016

A new initiative for swift insolvency proceedings will be piloted from April 1 in a drive to reduce preparation time and costs and provide a swift hearing.

The pilot will initially operate for two years with reviews taking place during that period. The idea is for a separate streamlined track to be created in the companies and bankruptcy court (in the High Court only) to enable cases to be tried more efficiently, faster and at reduced cost.

Mr Registrar Briggs describes key features of the Insolvency Express Trials in the spring issue of R3's Recovery magazine (here)

Commenting on the pilot, Frances Coulson said: "Registrar Briggs' new insolvency express trials pilot in the Companies Court in London is very welcome. So many cases languish waiting for trial with nothing effective happening for a year or so post completion of evidence.

"Respondents may remove or spend assets in the interim, and/or the gap in the litigation timetable may be filled with irrelevant, costs-increasing communication, but with little real pressure to settle.

"I have always held the view that the best way to reduce litigation costs is to have a speedy trial timetable. If the courts can actually accommodate that, then that is a huge step forward. Nor do I think it will increase the number of cases actually going to trial. Often it takes the pressure of a looming date to make the parties focus and settle."

Frances Coulson (fcoulson@moonbeever.com)

This briefing is intended for general information only and should not be considered as giving advice in relation to any individual case nor be taken as applying to any particular case. No liability is accepted for any such use of the information contained here

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