Courts exempt from second lockdown
As the Country is facing a second Lockdown, lawyers all over the Country are relieved that at least the courts will continue to operate through the 4-week period.
During the first lockdown, lawyers were unable to attend court for hearings in person and we have had to adjust quickly to hearings by telephone or video conference. These remote hearings do save on travelling & waiting time which in turn can save costs for our clients.
The issue with the first lockdown is that it has created a huge backlog of cases which the courts have are still working through so the prospect of everything being pushed back again was worrying.
Senior judges have said:
'It is vital for the well-being of the country that the administration of justice continues to operate. The legal profession, the parties, jurors, witnesses, judges, magistrates and court staff are all key workers, vital to the continued running of the courts and tribunals in this proposed period of renewed significant restrictions. Our experience since March has left us much better prepared. HMCTS will continue to follow and implement public health advice to reduce risk.'
Many hearings are still being conducted remotely and I personally think this will be the way forward for many hearings in the future, but at least for now, the Courts will remain open and continue to administer justice as far as it is able to.