Dispute Resolution analysis: Judge Keyser QC (sitting as a High Court judge) has given a warning to practitioners who seek to make inappropriate applications to strike out witness evidence prepared for a trial, pursuant to CPR PD 57AC, on the basis of non-compliance with that Practice Direction applicable to trial witness statements in the Business and Property Courts. While this application had partial success (in that parts of the claimants’ witness statements were struck out), the nature of the application, which was judged to be ‘disproportionate’ and ‘oppressive’, including given the scale of the costs which were generated, meant that the applicant was ordered to pay 75% of the respondents’ costs on an indemnity basis. The decision acts as a clear guide to the parameters of the sanctions regime for non-compliance with the Practice Direction on witness statements and a reminder of the consequences of failure to adhere to the principles set out in recent case law. Written by James Bradford, barrister at 39 Essex Chambers.
Curtiss and others v Zurich Insurance plc  EWHC 1514
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This analysis was first published on LexisNexis® on 27 June 2022 and can be found here (subscription required).