Small claims rules to be simplified?Small claims rules follow the same court rules as higher value claims, with a small number of modifications. The Civil Procedure Rules which apply to civil claims are found here. It takes quite some time to get familiar with them.

Even then, there is specific case law which demonstrates the rules in action and which Judges will take into account. Most solicitors, barristers and Judges, will refer to the White Book, which is the main text. It contains the rules and lots of commentary and case law. You can likely access the White Book in one of your local libraries in the reference section. However, it is two volumes and runs to several thousands of pages.

Small Claims Rules To Be Simplified?

A senior Judge has said that the civil court rules, including the small claims rules should be made much more simple. He thinks it will help court users and litigants in person “to make it more effective, and reduce costs and delays”.

He encourages the consideration of other systems across the world such as far away as Brazil and as close as Scotland. In Brazil in particular, the court system allows the parties themselves to better case manage disputes.

Lord Dyson, the Judge raising the issue, said it was “worth thinking about whether to adopt such a procedure here … and that provided agreement between the parties is subject to court consent, I can see no objection to allowing parties some freedom to manage the litigation”.

The courts are looking to make costs savings wherever possible and including reducing the time Judges spend on cases. If the parties themselves can properly manage cases, it could take the burden off the Judges.


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