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Judges issue revised guidance on commercial actions

1 February 2019

New guidance has been issued by the commercial judges of the Court of Session.

The guidance relates to:

  • the recovery of documents in commercial actions;
  • the enforcement of adjudication awards;
  • circumstances in which dispensing with certain of the court’s usual requirements may be appropriate.

On recovery of documents, the judges set out general principles rather than follow the detailed approach of the practice direction that applies in England & Wales, though some regard has been had to that. The court expects all involved to adopt a co-operative, constructive and sensible approach, and that recovery should be reasonable and proportionate having regard to the issues in the action which are truly contentious, with discussions taking place as early as possible.

Following feedback that more could be done to facilitate speedy enforcement of adjudication awards, proposals to facilitate early determination of a dispute will be viewed favourably, provided the defender's interests are not unfairly prejudiced. These could include early hearings, shortened period of notice, and extempore judgments or judgments issued after no more than 28 days.

The guidance also covers dispensing with aspects of the standard guidance where appropriate, with proposals being raise at at a preliminary hearing or prior to the procedural hearing.

A revised and updated version of Commercial Actions: Guidance for Practitioners has also been issued (click here to access).

The new guidance has effect from Monday 4 February 2019.


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