Category Written advocacy

MCKENZIE FRIENDS AND THE THREE WISE MONKEYS: A DISCRETION TO BE EXERCISED RARELY

In Ravenscroft -v- Canal & River Trust [2016] EWHC 2282 (Ch) Chief Master Marsh considered the law relating to allowing a McKenzie friend to be permitted to act. (This case also considered the use of without prejudice correspondence in court,  this will be dealt with in a separate post). “…the conduct of civil litigation is […]

ADVOCACY – THE JUDGE’S VIEW V: TO PERSUADE A JUDGE THINK LIKE A JUDGE

This series looks at the views from judges around the world and the advice they give to advocates.  Here we look at the article from J. Frederic Voros, jr for the Utah State Bar: To Persuade a Judge, Think Like a Judge.  This is written by a judge in the Utah Court of Appeals and […]

TOO LATE AND TOO LONG: OCEANS APART BUT TWO JUDGES HAVE THE SAME VIEW ON LAWYERS’ LATE & LENGTHY SUBMISSIONS

Some parts of the legal profession do not have a reputation for concision. It is interesting to see similar observations coming from two judges, in two very different jurisdictions, on the same day. “Sly lawyers take advantage of this institutional inertia to flout our page limits with impunity. This encourages disdain for our rules and […]

UNNECESSARY MATERIAL, DUPLICATION AND INFORMATION OVERLOAD: ANOTHER JUDGE’S LAMENT

The observations of Mr Justice Kerr at the end of his judgment in Kimmance -v- General Medical Council [2016] EWHC 1808 (Admin) contains some familiar themes in relation to the preparation of cases: bundles, citations and skeletons. “The parties should not lodge thousands of pages of documents to cater for a chance of one in […]

ADVOCACY – THE JUDGE’S VIEW IV: “AVOID BULLSHIT, SMOKE AND MIRRORS” (OH AND BEWARE OF “WELL PADDED VANITY”)

In the fourth in this series we are returning to Australia and looking at the guidance given by the Hon Chief Justice Pat Keane in his keynote address to the Australian Lawyers Alliance Queensland State Conference in February 2013. Remember the main aim of these posts is to whet your appetite so you read the […]

ADVOCACY – THE JUDGE’S VIEW II: “USEFUL”,”JUST & CHEAP”: GUIDANCE FROM DOWN UNDER

The post earlier this week on Things Lawyers do to Annoy Judges was, without doubt, one of the most publicised and read posts on this blog.  However it also opened up a rich train of enquiry: what do judges write about advocacy?  This is important because in civil cases it is judges that will decide […]

THINGS LAWYERS DO TO ANNOY JUDGES: EDITED HIGHLIGHTS

Regular readers of this blog will be familiar with the judgment of Mr Justice Joseph W. Quinn in the case of  The Hearing Clinic (Niagara Falls) -v- Ontario Ltd, 2014 ONAC 5831  where he was more than blunt in his assessment of witness evidence.  He is equally blunt in his assessment of lawyers in a […]

A CASE YOU MUST READ IF YOU THINK PLEADINGS ARE NOT IMPORTANT

The opening paragraphs of the Court of Appeal decision today in The Prudential Assurance Company Limited -v- Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs [2016] EWCA Civ 376 should be compulsory reading for anyone who considers that pleadings can be approached in a casual manner. “it soon became clear that the lack of pleadings meant […]

ANOTHER COMMENT ON BUNDLES: TOO MUCH AND TOO BIG

I do not scour the law reports for complaints about trial bundles, they just keep occurring and I keep commenting.  It is a matter that has a surprisingly large readership: the post on how to prepare a trial bundle has been the most popular post on this blog for two years. There were more observations […]

ANOTHER ASSESSMENT OF WITNESS CREDIBILITY

A regular theme of this blog has been how important witness credibility is to the outcome of many civil actions.  The assessment of credibility is often one of the key tasks of the trial  judge at. It is an issue that crosses into virtually every type of civil litigation, and determines the outcome of most […]