COVID-19: Business as unusual? Litigating in England during the coronavirus pandemic
Parties experienced in international trade will be generally familiar with the sort of economic events that can increase market volatility and counterparty risk. Inevitably, such market shocks tend to drive a spike in litigation, often on an urgent basis, as parties take steps to preserve and enforce legal remedies. The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic causing widespread disruption across the world has proved to be no exception, resulting in a sharp rise in disputes reaching – or in the process of reaching – the English Courts. However, what is proving to be unprecedented in modern times is the disruption caused to systems of justice at exactly the time that they are subject to increased demand from businesses across the globe.
With restrictions on our daily lives seeming likely to last for some time yet, one of the unique challenges posed by Covid-19 is whether it remains possible to turn to the Courts for effective redress.