Rawet v Daimler AG: A return to orthodoxy in pre-service amendments

On 10 February 2022, the Divisional Court (Dingemans LJ and Picken J) in Rawet v Daimler AG[1] ("Rawet") handed down a significant decision in relation to the requirements for pre-service amendments.

The decision arose in prospective group litigation proceedings concerning unlawful emissions from Mercedes vehicles. The main question for the Divisional Court was whether CPR 17.1 allowed for the addition of claimants to a claim form prior to service. Prior to the controversial decision of Mann J in the High Court in Various Claimants v G4S plc[2] ("G4S"), the general understanding amongst practitioners was that this was permissible.

The orthodox position was that the key distinction was between pre-service and post-service amendments, with the latter engaging additional requirements in CPR 19.4 to apply for and obtain the Court's permission to "remove, add or substitute a party". This is subject to the special provisions, after the end of a relevant limitation period, about adding or substituting parties in CPR 19.5 and adding or substituting claims in CPR 17.4.

You can read the full post on our Commercial, Construction & International Arbitration Blog here.