There is no doubt that COVID-19 has forced all courts to take a long and hard look at how they can become more user friendly and, frankly, more modern in their approach.
A memorandum produced by the Standing International Forum of Commercial Courts entitled "Delivering justice during the COVID-19 pandemic and the future use of technology" addresses the impact of the pandemic on commercial courts and how they might change as a result.
In short, commercial courts around the globe face a huge backlog of cases, not least in England where our commercial court is often the forum of choice for multi-national disputes.
This, the authors argue, along with the financial pressures being felt by the legal industry as a whole as well as the difficulties faced by those that lack the financial means to access justice, is something that must be addressed by commercial courts sooner rather than later and embracing technology is the way to do it.
The Memorandum examines the ways in which fair and open justice can be maintained and the range of technologies being used to do so. This SIFoCC work product goes some way in providing a detailed list of specific issues that the world’s courts are taking into account on subjects such as online hearings, and which will be important for the future.