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Title: The delivery of civil justice : managing the process
Author: Wadia, Rachel
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2001
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This thesis explores, dissects and examines the delivery of civil justice in Scotland, particularly focusing on the Court of Session before 31 May 2000. The development of judicial supervision of litigating practice, both in Scotland and other common law jurisdictions, is evaluated against the backdrop of historical events. Current political and economic pressures combine to spotlight a public service where unmonitored, unsupervised and uncontrolled demands congest court timetables and drain both the public purse and clients queuing for judicial resolution. A comparison between the aims and realities of a civil litigation system highlights the dichotomy between legal principles and market principles. An analysis of the gap between the aims and realities brings into focus the different perspectives and role of the practitioner, the judiciary and the government. Historical analysis reveals that a pattern of reform initiatives, instigated regularly to protect development of a distinctive system of law, is identifiable throughout the history of the Court of Session. The absorption of piecemeal reform is also traced. Identification of current complaints, namely undue delay, unnecessary expense and complexities updates the historical analysis. The responsibility for underlying defects within the system focuses on a solution which is gradually impregnating common law legal systems throughout the world - judicial supervision of the pace and preparation of actions so that the gold threads of fairness and justice interweave all stages of process. These attributes are evaluated against a backdrop of criticism of the interventionist role by the traditionally passive adjudicators, altering power structures in the litigation market. In-depth analysis of management of caseflow by judges in the Scottish Commercial Court shows that early intervention results in earlier resolution, giving clients and representatives a focus for preparation and settlement negotiations. However a follow-up study reveals a slight slowing down of initial successes. It is suggested that increasing judicial powers to impose sanctions on representatives as well as clients, and judicial commitment to use them, may stem the gradual intrusion of traditional working practices.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available