COURT GUIDANCE: A CONDENSED VIEW OF THE GUIDANCE GIVEN BY COURTS IN AND AROUND MANCHESTER

At a time when many courts have issued detailed guidance as to how to continue working Sophie Hurst  provides  condensed guidance of practices in the courts in the north.

Sophie Hurst

 

Condensed Court Guidance – what is covered below

1 Civil Matters – Northern Circuit
2 Civil Matters – Greater Manchester Courts
3 Business & Property Courts – Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle
4 Administrative Courts
5 Crown Court – Northern Circuit
6 Listing Questionnaire (Greater Manchester Courts)
7 Draft Orders – Orders to be issued where a FT or MT is listed (Greater Manchester
Courts)

8 Draft Orders – Orders Order to be issued in all listed applications (Greater Manchester Courts)

 

CIVIL MATTERS – NORTHERN CIRCUIT

Hearings
1. No “in person” hearings are going ahead unless they are:
a. Urgent;
b. Cannot be dealt with remotely; and,
c. Are absolutely necessary.
Note: We are not aware of any satisfying those criteria on Circuit.
 The Civil Courts have defaulted to telephone hearings.
 Parties and their legal advisers should:
a. Be proactive to identify well in advance those cases that can be dealt with by
telephone/video or cannot be dealt with remotely at all;
b. Provide as much information as we can such as, identifying the representatives; providing
contact details; providing a meaningful summary of the case and a list of issues; providing
a well-structured e-bundle for the hearing.
 There is a move towards video hearings but this is yet to really take hold (apart from BPC hearings)
E-bundles
 The vast majority of judges are working remotely. It is essential that they have well organised ebundles containing essential documentation. Make sure that “bookmarks” are included so that
users can go straight to the relevant document. Make sure that documents are well copied.
Key Message
Proactive We need to try and find solutions to enable hearings to go ahead: plan ahead;
identify those cases where there may be difficulties and find solutions for them.
Alternatively, if a hearing simply cannot proceed as a remote hearing then
identify that hearing early, speak to the other side and notify the court.
Partnership If both sides want a hearing to go ahead and avoid an adjournment then we need
to co-operate. Work together to agree a solution and present it to the Court.
Patient The judges and the staff are doing their best. They are under immense pressure
and strain. It is not “business as usual”. We need to understand that.
Flexible We need to adapt the way we work.
Feedback We need to know what is working, what is not working and how things can be
improved. There is a lot of feedback coming from our criminal colleagues. We
need to hear from you what is happening in civil cases, on the Small Claims
Track, the Fast Track and the Multi Track.
Source: Northern Circuit CTF Update – Darryl Allen QC
1st April 2020

CIVIL MATTERS – GREATER MANCHESTER

Orders
 Orders are to be issued on cases and applications in civil work (excluding BPC) listed in Manchester
after 31 March 2020 in accordance with specified drafts (See below). In due course, these orders
are likely to cover cases listed in both Stockport and Wigan.
 Orders made in individual cases (which will be sent out by the Court in the usual way) may vary
slightly, but the substance of those orders is likely to match the drafts.
 Parties should consider the orders carefully and, if they object to any part of the order (for
example because they want the matter to be adjourned), make an application to the court to vary
the order. Each order sets out how that must be done. If both parties object to any part of the
order they should file a consent order reflecting that agreement for the court to consider.
 Orders make broadly standard provision for the arrangements to be made for setting up a video
hearing (see the FT and MT order at para.3) and preparing an electronic bundle (see the same
order at paragraph 7). These drafts orders should be used as a starting point for any consent
orders which concern electronic bundles or video hearings.
 The orders mandate the production of electronic bundles.
 If electronic bundles have not been prepared the judge may decide to adjourn the hearing and
costs consequences may follow.
Communication with the Court
 Telephone lines remain open for you to speak to court staff but it is likely to be far more effective
to communicate by email. The main email address for all civil matters will remain
manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk
 As directed in the appended orders, emails should contain certain information in the subject line.
Listing Priorities
 Work will be dealt with following the priorities set out below (issued 27 March 2020). These will
be kept under review.
 The priorities do not apply to general QB matters or B&PC work
Priority 1: Work Which Must Be Done
1. Committals
2. Freezing Orders
3. Injunctions (and return days for ex parte injunctions).
4. The emphasis must be on those with a real time element (such as post-termination
employment restrictions), noise or interference with property.
5. Anti-Social Behaviour/Harassment injunctions (not ancillary to possession)
6. Applications to stay enforcement of existing possession orders
7. Production of persons in custody following Power of Arrest detentions
8. Applications to displace under s 29 of MHA
9. Homelessness Applications
10. Enforcement work that does not involve bailiffs, such as third-party debt orders
(particularly hardship payments).
11. Any applications in cases listed for trial in the next three months
12. Any applications where there is a substantial hearing listed in the next month.
13. any application suitable for paper determination
14. All Multi Track hearings where parties agree that it is urgent (subject to triage).
CONDENSED COURT GUIDANCE
SOPHIE HURST
03.04.20
15. Appeals in all these cases
Priority 2: Work Which Could Be Done
1. Infant and Protected Party approvals (children could attend by Skype)
2. CPR 21 approvals
3. Applications for interim payments in MT/PI/Clin Neg
4. Stage 3 assessment of damages
5. Trials involving the survival of a business or the solvency of an individual
6. Enforcement of trading contracts
7. Applications for summary judgement for a specified sum
8. Applications to set aside judgement in default
9. Applications for security for costs
10. All small claim/fast track trials where parties agree it is urgent (subject to triage)
11. Any small claim suitable for determination on paper
12. Preliminary assessment of costs
13. Appeals in all these cases
County court
 A protocol to help the court prioritise county court work (claims and applications) has been
prepared for the CJC.
1. For all existing claims and applications, the listing officer will in the first instance make an
assessment of whether the case falls within category 1 or category 2 or otherwise and will
list accordingly. In cases of doubt the matter will be referred to a judge.
2. For all applications or claims issued after 29th March 2020 the party issuing the
application or claim will be required to a) complete the listing questionnaire (appended);
and b) file a copy of the completed request with the court within 7 days of the issue of the
application and c) serve it on the respondent / defendant. The questionnaire is intended
to be sent out and returned electronically but can be printed if necessary.
3. The parties’ responses will be considered by a member of the listing office. In a clear case
the hearing will be prioritised as suggested by the parties without referral to a judge. In a
case of any doubt or disagreement between the parties the matter should be referred to
a judge for prioritisation.
4. In any case which has not been prioritised that comes before a judge, the judge shall
assign a priority.
5. In any such case as referred to in paragraph 4 above the judge shall at the same time, and
if not already determined, give an indication of the preferred method of hearing –
whether in court or remotely and if remotely the preferred method of conducting the
hearing (telephone or video and the arrangements for such if not already made).
6. The listing office will have the power to remove cases from the list that either a) do not
have priority or b) cannot be accommodated because of the amount of other prioritised
work.
7. Any case that has to be removed from a list will be referred to a judge for directions as to
relisting.
Queen’s Bench
 Queen’s Bench work outside the TCC and the Circuit Commercial Court will be dealt with on a
case-by-case basis.

Mode of Hearing
 If a matter remains in the list and involves live evidence all efforts will be made to arrange a remote
hearing. It is likely that a video hearing will be preferred over a telephone hearing. If no live
evidence is involved it is likely that telephone hearings will be the best way forward. However,
there will be (at the moment and in most cases) no fixed rules as to when a telephone hearing or
a video hearing should be used.
 The main platforms for a telephone hearing are the usual court HMCTS approved legal conference
providers and BTMeetMe.
 Where a legal representative sets up a call one of the approved providers should be used. This will
mean that BTMeetMe hearings (which do not require any pre-booking and so are easier to use)
will be generally available for litigants in person.
 If the hearing is by telephone, each participant (other than the Judge) should introduce
herself/himself by name each time she or he speaks.
Video
 If video hearings are to be arranged, careful thought needs to be given to a number of matters.
Some are set out in the MR’s Protocol (at https://www.judiciary.uk/wpcontent/uploads/2020/03/Civil-court-guidance-on-how-to-conduct-remote-hearings.pdf ) which
should be read with care.
 It will be sensible to ensure all attendees are gathered on the video call and for the judge then to
be the last introduced participant and to ensure that the court has contact details for all
participants.
Witnesses
 Arrangements will need to be made for witnesses to have access to the bundle.
 It will be important that witnesses understand, before they give evidence, the need to be in an
appropriate place which is quiet and free of distraction. Arrangements to swear the witness in or
for the witness to affirm should also be made. The responsibility to arrange or point out these
matters will rest with representatives.
Bundles
 The old practice of including everything in the bundle will need to change. Bundles should be
prepared so that they are concise and manageable and include only extracts of documents if only
extracts are needed.
 Where possible if the bundle is to be emailed, it should not be made available in a piecemeal
fashion, it should be sent via one email. As far as possible attached documents should not be
password protected and the provision of documents after the bundle has been finalised should
be kept to a minimum.
 Where possible, online (or virtual) data rooms should be used for bundles, particularly large
bundles for use at trial. The court is unlikely to be able to accept emails which are in total larger
than 10 MB. Arrangements to access the online vault should be communicated in good time
before the hearing.
Platform for remote hearings
 Parties should agree an appropriate platform for the hearing. Most judges will have access to
Skype for Business, but the Protocol makes clear that other platforms might be used. It will be
important to make sure that the judge dealing with a matter is content to use the suggested
platform.

 Participants should be aware that the email address used to sign in to Skype may be visible to all
other participants.
Moving matters to a paper determination
 If the trial is a small claims trial it may be sensible to consider inviting the court to deal with the
matter on paper in accordance with CPR 27.10. The judge will have the final decision as to whether
the case can be dealt with in that way.
 When dealing with applications, thought should be given to the use of CPR 23.8(b). If the parties
agree it can be dealt with on papers, they should comply with CPE PD 23A para.11.1. Again, the
judge will have the final decision as to whether the application can be dealt with in that way.
 The court might consider using its powers under CPR 23.8(c) to make orders on paper where it
does not consider a hearing is necessary.
Litigants in Person
 Litigants in Person will also be affected by these temporary arrangements and should actively
consider what remote hearings would best suit them.
Recordings
 The Manchester CJC will remain open.
 Matters heard remotely may be relayed through an open court room. Hearings will be shown on
the daily cause list. If the hearing is relayed into a court room, it will be recorded by the court’s
recording system.
 If any matter is heard in private and there is no court based recording facility a legal representative
may be invited by the judge to arrange for recording and required to hold the recording on strict
undertakings. Representatives must remind parties that is a contempt of court to record (or
transmit) proceedings in any way unless the Judge gives permission.
Source: Note on Covid-19 Orders, Temporary Procedures and Listing Priorities
HHJ Nigel Bird
31 March 2020

 

 

BUSINESS AND PROPERTY COURTS – LEEDS, LIVERPOOL, MANCHESTER AND NEWCASTLE

Hearings
 The civil court centres in Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester will remain open for essential face-toface hearings.
 The Civil, Family and Tribunal centre in Newcastle will not be open, but will remain staffed.
 Wherever possible, the BPCs will seek to make arrangements to hold hearings using technology
for remote communication. Although this will be a matter for judicial discretion in each case, if it
is not possible to hold hearings remotely, it is highly likely that the hearing will be adjourned.
 Parties and their professional advisers should not wait for contact from the court about the
arrangements for listed hearings. They should co-operate well in advance of a scheduled hearing
to agree a suitable means by which, subject to the court, the hearing can proceed and put a
proposal to the court. This should include:
a. The preferred manner of remote communication. At this time, instruction from HMCTS is
only to use BT Meet Me for hearings by telephone, and Skype for Business for videoconferencing.
b. Whether it will be possible for the hearing to be held in public by giving remote access to
the media or members of the public pursuant to the new PD 51Y, and in any event
whether, and by whom, a recording of proceedings will be made and stored.
Those arrangements can then be approved by the court on paper or at a brief CMC convened for
the purpose. Alternatively, parties should agree the terms on which the hearing can be adjourned.
Some applications may be suitable for determination on paper and without a hearing pursuant to
CPR 23, in which case the court should be notified of the parties’ view as soon as possible.
Bundles
 Parties should agree and prepare electronic bundles of documents and authorities which must be
strictly limited in size and number to those which are essential to the issues to be determined.
 Whilst it the intention to keep the CE filing system operational in each of the BPC centres, it is
likely arrangements will need to be made for electronic bundles for hearings to be sent directly to
the court by email.
Urgent applications
 Subject to a system for assessment of urgency and triage, applications for interim relief which are
genuinely urgent but can be heard in court hours will be heard remotely by judges from each of
the four BPC centres. The existing out of hours service will also continue for those matters which
need to be dealt with out of hours.
Source: COVID-19 update Number 1 Mr Justice Snowden
Hight Court Judge and Vice-Chancellor of the County Palatine of Lancaster
31st March 2020

 

 

THE ADMINISTRATIVE  COURT

 All usual business (i.e. non-urgent claims and applications) are to be lodged electronically with the
Administrative Court Office. The date you send the claim or application will be recorded as the
date filed.
 The public counters in the ACO are closed. All functions previously dealt with at the counters will
now be dealt with electronically.
Fees
Fees will be taken in the following way for all claims:
 If you have a PBA account – include in your covering letter with any application or claim you lodge
that the fee can be deducted from this account.
 If you do not have a PBA account – include in the covering letter that you undertake to pay the
requisite fee by sending a cheque in the post within 7 days.
 If you are not legally represented you must include in your cover letter that you will pay the court
fee, or file the relevant fee remission document once the Fees counter reopens to the public
(setting out the reasons in your covering letter why you are exempt from paying the court fee).
Issuing claims and applications
 All claims for judicial review, regulatory/statutory appeals, and planning matters will be received
electronically by the ACO and must be sent to the following e mail address:
administrativecourtoffice.generaloffice@hmcts.x.gsi.gov.uk
 Any extradition appeals must be sent electronically to:
Administrativecourtoffice.crimex@hmcts.x.gsi.gov.uk
 The ACO staff will then notify the parties by e mail of the case reference number.
 If you are not legally represented and you do not have access to email, you should contact the
Administrative Court Office by telephone on 020 7947 6158
Responding to claims, appeals or application notices
 Any response to a claim or appeal must be lodged electronically with the ACO. All
acknowledgement of services or respondents notice (non extradition) should be sent to:
administrativecourtoffice.generaloffice@hmcts.x.gsi.gov.uk
 In relation to extradition appeals a party should send their respondent’s notice to:
Administrativecourtoffice.crimex@hmcts.x.gsi.gov.uk
 Any interlocutory applications should be sent to the general office inbox, unless the matter
specifically relates to crime or extradition in which case this should be sent to the crimex inbox. If
the matter is urgent then the parties must highlight this in the title of the e mail /flag the email as
being one of high importance.
Bundles
 Parties must lodge an electronic bundle so that the case can be allocated to the judiciary to
consider the application.
Paper applications
 Applications for permission to apply for judicial review, applications for permission to appeal, and
interlocutory applications will continue to be considered on the papers as usual.
Hearings
 Administrative Court cases will continue to be listed for hearing, although hearings of non-urgent
business may take longer to come on.
 Most if not all hearings will be conducted by Skype or phone, and where possible will be conducted
as public hearings.
 If you are asked for a time estimate for a hearing, please take into account that hearings by Skype
or phone can last longer than those conducted in person, and adjust your estimate accordingly.
Orders
 These will be served by e mail on all parties

Source: Administrative Court Guidance – Urgent Applications
27th March 2020

 

THE CROWN COURT – NORTHERN CIRCUIT

 
 The focus is upon conducting a significant number of hearings by remote means.
 The approved technology for undertaking remote hearings at the present time will be Skype for
Business.
 There may be circumstances when BT MeetME can be used, but it is anticipated those
circumstances will be limited. No other platforms will be used for hearings.
 The Recorder of Liverpool and key members of his staff have prepared a guide for legal
professionals who appear in the Crown Court in relation to the use of Skype for Business. This
Guidance will now be adopted across the circuit as the approach which will be taken to remote
hearings in the Crown Court. (See below)
Source: The Hon Mr. Justice Dove
Lead Presiding Judge of the Northern Circuit
27th March 2020

 

Installation of Skype for Business

 Ensure you have installed the relevant version of Skype for Business on the device you will be
connecting on.
 The ‘Basic’ version of Skype for business is a free app and is compatible with the paid-for version
used by the Court.
 For guidance on installing choose from the links below depending of the device(s) you’re
connecting with:
Windows Computers
https://products.office.com/en-gb/skype-for-business/download-app
Mac Computers
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/install-skype-for-business-on-a-mobile-device3239c8a3-cf55-4ff0-a967-5de51911c049
Mobile Devices
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/office/install-skype-for-business-on-a-mobile-device3239c8a3-cf55-4ff0-a967-5de51911c049
Attending a hearing (a step-by-step guide)
1. Once the final list has been published on XHibit, log into the case on the Digital Case System.
2. Check the Comments column on the right-hand side. There will be a comment with a blue banner
from the Court which contains the hyperlink for the next day’s hearing. Add a comment to this
note with your role and contact details in case of issues.
3. Before you’re hearing is due to begin, copy the link from the Comments column and paste it into
the address bar of your preferred internet browser (the preferred suggestions are Microsoft Edge
or Google Chrome). This will then take you to a Skype for Business page which asks if you want to
join the meeting.
Note: If you are using a mobile device and having difficulties copying and pasting the link, you may
find it easier to send yourself an email containing the link which you can receive on that device.
This should allow you to click and to open the relevant link on the device.

4. If you are joining the meeting as a guest, please ensure that you choose your name as it appears
on the XHIBIT system, this will help the clerk to sign you into XHIBIT correctly for fees purposes.
5. Once you have joined the meeting you must do the following:
a. Ensure your microphone is unmuted (blue icon at bottom centre of screen). At this point
you will be heard but not seen by others.
b. Click the video icon at the bottom of the screen (next to microphone icon) and then click
on the option to start the video call.
6. If for any reason you lose the Skype connection during the hearing you may re-join the conference
either by:
a. Clicking the option on the Skype application to “Rejoin Skype Meeting” or
b. Recopy the link from DCS and paste into your internet browser.
c. When you re-join you will need to go through the steps at 5 a. and 5 b. again to be heard
and seen.
Further notes for Advocates
 RECORDING – As this is a Crown Court Hearing it is being recorded on the DARTS system and
retained in the usual way.
 DRESS – All those appearing remotely should be appropriately dressed for attendance at court.
Legal robes i.e. bands, wigs and gowns are not required. The Judges will appear robed.
 LOGGED ATTENDANCE – Your attendance for the hearing will be noted on the XHibit log by the
Court Clerk. This will ensure the LAA and CPS are notified of your attendance. You do not need to
log in using the terminal in the robing room.
 MICROPHONE – Good practice is to mute your microphone when you are not speaking and please
be aware of your background environment.
Source: Guidance for Legal Professional to Join a Skype Hearing (DCS Cases)

 

Greater Manchester County Courts – Listing priority questionnaire

In the present emergency, the court’s resources must be concentrated on the most urgent cases. You
should complete this form to enable the court to list your case.
You should identify any matters in support of your application in the “Comments” section, for
example, why you say that a multi-track case should be treated as urgent.
This form should be submitted by email to manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk. The email must include in
the subject line of the email the claim number, the names of the parties and the words “Listing
priority.”
You should return this form as soon as possible and in any event within 7 days.
Case number
Name of parties
Your name
Which party are you (or whom do you represent)?
What kind of case is this?
(You should refer to HHJ Bird’s direction)
Will the case be heard ☐ In court (Cases will be heard in open court only in exceptional
cases. State in the “Comments” section below why this
case must be heard in court)
☐ By video link (State in the “Comments” section below what
arrangements have been/will be made to ensure
that the judge, the parties and the witnesses will
be connected)
☐ By telephone
☐Decision only on papers
Have you prepared an electronic bundle in accordance with HHJ Bird’s direction?
Do all parties agree the contents of this form?
Comments
Judge’s comments

Orders to be issued where a FT or MT is listed – subject to any decision on priority
……….
Before His Honour Judge Bird the Designated Civil Judge for Greater Manchester
UPON the court taking notice of the COVID 19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and the measures being taken
in response and the Protocol regarding remote hearings issued on 20 March 2020 (“the Protocol”) a
copy of which can be found at https://www.judiciary.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Civil-courtguidance-on-how-to-conduct-remote-hearings.pdf
AND UPON the Court having considered matters on the papers
AND UPON it being recorded that the court expects the parties to do their utmost to co-operate with
each other in all things and lodge consent orders wherever possible
AND UPON the parties being reminded of the HMCTS Email Guidance referred to in CPR PD 5B which
provides that the total size of an email, including attachments, must not exceed 10 megabytes
AND WITHOUT A HEARING AND ON THE COURT’S OWN INITIATIVE
IT IS ORDERED THAT:
1. The parties shall use their best endeavours to agree a mechanism to allow the trial of this action
presently listed to commence on [ ] 2020 to proceed on that date by way of video hearing or
telephone hearing, having regard to the matters set out in this Order and in the Protocol (insofar
as they do not clash with the terms of this order).
2. Within 7 days of service of this order upon the parties,
a) in the event that the parties reach agreement, the Claimant (or the first named represented
party in the event that the Claimant is unrepresented) shall send an email to the court at
manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk which confirms that terms have been agreed and sets out such terms
as an attachment to the email;
b) in the event that terms are not agreed, the parties shall send an email to the court at
manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk attaching each party’s draft directions, containing brief reasons for
each side’s proposal for the disposal of this claim.
3. In the event that the agreed arrangement is for a video hearing, the terms shall include the
following detail:
a) The chosen video platform (bearing in mind that all judges have access to Skype for Business
but that not all judges will have access to other video platforms)
b) Arrangements that will be made to join the judge and all persons into the video conference
and how witnesses will be dealt with
c) The identity and a contact telephone number and email address for all persons who will join
the conference

d) Provision for all parties to sign in to the conference at least half an hour before the hearing is
due to begin, to address any issues with the connection
e) Such other matters as are necessary for the hearing to take place including the matters listed
at paragraphs 20 to 23 of the Protocol
4. The subject line of the email must include the claim number and the date of the trial and include
the words “agreed remote directions”.
5. In the event that the parties reach agreement and comply with paragraphs 2, 3 and 4 of this order
the court the directions set out at paragraphs 7 and 8 of this order shall apply. If the parties seek
alternative directions in relation to the bundle they must set out within the email the directions
they seek and the reasons why the provisions set out in paragraph 7 are not appropriate in their
case. The court will consider the agreement, and any request to vary paragraph 7, and give such
further directions as are required which may include attendance at a brief telephone directions
hearing.
6. In the event that the parties fail to reach agreement the court will give directions in any event
which may include the vacation of the trial or the requirement for the parties to attend a brief
telephone directions hearing.
7. Any directions already given as to the filing of a trial bundle or skeleton argument are varied as
follows. No less than 3 days before the hearing is to take place the Claimant (or if unrepresented,
the first named represented party) shall send an email to the court at
manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk , copied to the other party and (if provided) to the Judge’s email
address:
a) Containing in the subject line the name of the case and the date and time of the hearing
b) Setting out in its body (not as an attachment) a succinct reading list of documents for the
Judge who will conduct the hearing together with an agreed estimate of the time it will take the Judge
to read the documents. The parties should endeavour to agree the list and the list should be specific
and if necessary refer to specific sections of a document, with page references to the electronic
bundle.
c) Containing a link to the electronic bundle at an online data room (where possible). If it is not
possible the electronic bundle must be attached to the email, in which case the size of the email
including attachments may not exceed 10 megabytes. The electronic bundle:
(i) Should be agreed
(ii) Must only contain the documents referred to in the reading list, which should only be those
documents which are necessary and will be referred to at trial
(iii) Should include skeleton arguments if ordered or appropriate
(iv) Wherever appropriate, should contain extracts of documents rather than the entirety of
documents
(v) be prepared in a single pdf format
(vi) Must be indexed and paginated in ascending order, to include index pages and necessary
authorities
(vii) Must always have a default display view for all pages of 100%

(viii) Must allow text on all pages to be selectable and to facilitate electronic annotation
(ix) Must have a resolution reduced to about 200 to 300 dpi to prevent delays whilst scrolling from
one page to another
(x) Shall not exceed 250 pages in a claim allocated to the fast track, or 750 pages in a claim
allocated to the multi track.
d) The parties should prepare the focussed reading list and electronic bundle on the basis that
the Judge dealing with the matter may have no previous knowledge of the case and may not have
access to the court file.
e) For the avoidance of doubt, this paragraph and the provision of an electronic bundle must be
complied with even if the parties have already filed a paper bundle.
8. Save insofar as they are varied or superseded by this order, directions already given in respect of
the preparation for trial shall continue to apply.
9. The parties must ensure that all witnesses have a copy of the bundle in a format that they are able
to use whilst giving evidence.
10. At an appropriate stage, the Court will consider whether the hearing should take place in public
or private having regard to CPR 39.2 and the Protocol.
11. Because this order has been made without a hearing a party may apply to set it aside or to vary
its terms. Such an application:
a) may be made by email to manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk
b) must be made within 7 days of service of this order and be copied to all parties
c) must include in the subject line of the email the claim number and the date of the adjourned
hearing
d) must attach a draft of the order the court is invited to make and
e) must set out in the body of the email on what grounds the proposed order is sought and, if it
is proposed that a hearing in a Court room is to take place, the measures required to ensure that this
can be done safely, lawfully and in accordance with Government, Public Health England, and other
appropriate guidelines
f) will be dealt with on paper without a hearing.

Order to be issued in all listed applications – subject to any decision on priority
……………………
Before His Honour Judge Bird the Designated Civil Judge for Greater Manchester
UPON the court taking notice of the COVID 19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and the measures being taken
in response and the Protocol regarding remote hearings issued on 20 March 2020 (“the Protocol”) a
copy of which can be found at https://www.judiciary.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Civil-courtguidance-on-how-to-conduct-remote-hearings.pdf
AND UPON the Court having considered matters on the papers
AND UPON it being recorded that the court expects the parties to do their utmost to co-operate with
each other in all things and lodge consent orders wherever possible
AND UPON the parties being invited wherever possible to consider the use of CPR 28.8(b), as set out
in paragraphs 7 to 9 of this order, bearing in mind that such a determination will be final pursuant to
CPR PD 23A para 11.1
AND UPON the parties being reminded of the HMCTS Email Guidance referred to in CPR PD 5B which
provides that the total size of an email, including attachments, must not exceed 10 megabytes
AND UPON it being recorded that in the event that any party fails to comply with any provision of this
order the matter may be adjourned
AND WITHOUT A HEARING AND ON THE COURT’S OWN INITIATIVE
IT IS ORDERED THAT:
1. The hearing of this application listed to take place on [ ] 2020 shall (subject to the remaining
terms of this order) proceed by way of a telephone conference.
2. At an appropriate stage, the Court will consider whether the hearing should take place in public
or private having regard to CPR 39.2 and the Protocol.
Arrangements to be made for the hearing if at least one party is represented
3. If at least one party is represented then the hearing shall be organised through an approved legal
conference provider, with the Claimant (or if the Applicant is unrepresented, the first named
represented party) to make the arrangements for the telephone conference.
Arrangements to be made for the hearing if both parties are unrepresented
4. If no party is represented then each party should separately
(a) notify the court as soon as possible (and in any event by 4pm 3 days before the hearing) that they are unrepresented;

(b) provide a telephone number on which they confirm that they can be reached by the court for
a telephone hearing conducted using BTMeetMe (or such other telephone hearing method as may be
utilised by the court in future).
5. The court will, after receiving the telephone numbers referred to in paragraph 3(b) above, make
the necessary arrangements for the telephone hearing. If the court cannot facilitate a BTMeetMe
hearing (or other telephone hearing method utilised by the court) on the time and date of the
hearing, the hearing will be adjourned to a date when the court can facilitate the telephone
hearing.
Arrangements for preparation of electronic bundle for remote hearings where one or both parties is
represented
6. No less than 3 days before the hearing is to take place the Applicant (or if the Applicant is
unrepresented the first named represented party) shall send an email to the court at
manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk copied to the other party and (if provided) to the Judge’s email
address:
a) Containing in the subject line the name of the case and the date and time of the hearing
b) Setting out in its body (not as an attachment) a succinct reading list of documents for the
Judge who will conduct the hearing together with an agreed estimate of the time it will take the Judge
to read the documents. The parties should endeavour to agree the list and the list should be specific
and if necessary refer to specific sections of a document, with page references to the electronic
bundle.
c) Containing a link to the electronic bundle at an online data room (where possible). If it is not
possible the electronic bundle must be attached to the email, in which case the size of the email
including attachments may not exceed 10 megabytes. The electronic bundle:
(i) Should be agreed
(ii) Must only contain the documents referred to in the reading list, which should only be those
documents which are necessary and will be referred to at the hearing
(iii) Should include skeleton arguments if ordered or appropriate
(iv) Wherever appropriate, should contain extracts of documents rather than the entirety of
documents
(v) be prepared in a single pdf format
(vi) Must be indexed and paginated in ascending order, to include index pages and necessary
authorities
(vii) Must always have a default display view for all pages of 100%
(viii) Must allow text on all pages to be selectable and to facilitate electronic annotation
(ix) Must have a resolution reduced to about 200 to 300 dpi to prevent delays whilst scrolling from
one page to another
(x) Shall not exceed 100 pages.
d) The parties should prepare the focussed reading list and electronic bundle on the basis that
the Judge dealing with the matter may have no previous knowledge of the case and may not have
access to the court file.

e) For the avoidance of doubt, this paragraph and the provision of an electronic bundle must be
complied with even if the parties have already filed a paper bundle.
Arrangements for preparation of electronic bundle for remote hearings where no party is represented
7. In the event that no party is represented the Applicant shall comply with the requirements of
paragraph 6
Arrangements to be made if the parties wish the application to be dealt with on paper
8. The parties should consider inviting the court to deal with the application on paper in accordance
with CPR 23.8(b) instead of at a telephone hearing.
9. If the parties are agreed, they should invite the court to deal with the matter in that manner by
sending an email to manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk
a) the subject line of the email must include the claim number and the date of the hearing and
include the words “paper determination” and
b) the email shall comply with paragraphs 6 (b) to (e) of this order
10. On receipt, the listed hearing will be vacated and the court will determine the application on paper
or give further directions.
Right to apply to vary this order
11. Because this order has been made without a hearing a party may apply to set it aside or to vary its
terms. Such an application:
a. must be made by email to manchestercivil@justice.gov.uk
b. must be made within 7 days of service of this order and be copied to all parties
c. must include in the subject line of the email the claim number and the date of the adjourned
hearing and the words “Application to vary order”
d. must attach a draft of the order the court is invited to make and
e. set out in the body of the email on what grounds the proposed order is sought and, if it is
proposed that a hearing in a Court room is to take place, the measures required to ensure that this
can be done safely and lawfully and in accordance with Government, Public Health England and other
appropriate guidelines.
f. will be dealt with on paper without a hearing

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