This guide was published yesterday the 30th April 2020. It is available here and reproduced below.
“This guide has been prepared to assist court users by summarising the requirements for the service of bundles, skeleton arguments and authorities for cases in the Business and Property Courts in Manchester during the COVID-19 pandemic. The current situation presents significant challenges to practitioners andto the judges, and the aim is to promote cooperation to ensure that the work of the BPCs continues as smoothly as possible.
In summary, the main points are:
• Bundles (for trials and all non-urgent applications) should be filed no later than three business
days before the hearing. Bundles should only contain the essential documents or parts of
• Skeleton arguments (with copies of authorities) should be filed no later than two business days
before the hearing.
• Skeleton arguments should avoid excessive citation of authorities. Where well-established
principles of law are relied on, reference to a textbook will suffice.
• During the COVID-19 pandemic, bundles, skeleton arguments and authorities should only be
filed in electronic format by sending attachments and/or links to the court at
Manchester.firstname.lastname@example.org. If the judge who is going to hear the case has given an
email address, documents should be sent directly to the judge as well as to the court.
• If the case is on CE-file, copies should also be CE filed. Please note that documents on CE file
cannot be accessed by a judge until they have been processed, which may take some time.
This guide sets out the latest time for lodging documents. Where possible, the parties should lodge
documents earlier, to allow time for getting them to the judge and to ensure that the judge has time to
read and digest the material before the hearing. This is particularly important during the COVID-19
pandemic, due to the additional demands of remote working and the limited capacity for court staff to
chase up missing documents. The late filing of bundles, skeleton arguments and/or authorities may lead
to the court being unable to deal with the hearing in a fair manner and being forced to adjourn the
hearing. In that event the court may have to consider whether to disallow costs or make an adverse costs
order (see para 21.84 of the Chancery Guide).
1. Hearing Bundles