High Court judge slams Woolf reforms

Mr Justice Burton of the Queen’s Bench Division said that the court had become inflexible in allowing parties to agree extensions of time between themselves as well as raising concerns that single joint experts could usurp the role of judges.

His second point is of particular interest to accountants because they are called upon in most financial cases to give evidence on technical issues.

Burton said that the reforms would mean higher costs to both parties, which goes against the spirit of the changes which were designed to cap costs because judges have been given more power to direct the case and eliminate time-wasting.

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