Message from Designated Civil Judge

  • 24/08/2023

The DCJ has asked that we pass on the following message to all court users:

Recent staff reductions mean that pressure on court staff at the CJC is increasing. In order to help them to do their job as efficiently as possible, it would be very helpful if users would please bear the following points in mind when dealing with the CJC.

When seeking approval of a settlement, compromise or payment on behalf of a child or protected party, Parts A to E of form CFO320 or CFO320PB must be fully completed. The Court will need the original form signed by the Litigation Friend not a copy. It is important that the name of the child or protected party matches exactly the name within the claim and that Parts C and D (which set out what investment directions the court is being asked to make) are fully completed. The original birth certificate of a child must be made available to the court so that the Judge can certify that the name and date of birth set out in Part B are correct. If the hearing is held remotely, a separate pdf certified copy of the birth certificate (not contained in the bundle) is likely to be sufficient (subject to any direction the court makes). If the relevant form is not fully completed or the birth certificate is not available, the hearing may need to be vacated or adjourned.

Retrospective Help With Fees applications take up a lot of court time and seem often to be unnecessary. This happens when a fee is paid to the court and then an application is made for a refund shortly thereafter. If at all possible, please apply for HWF prospectively. Pressure on staff time means that going forward retrospective applications for HWF are unlikely to be prioritised over, more pressing, work, which will of course result in delays to litigants, however regrettable that may be.

If you are emailing the court, please  send your email to one email address. Often emails are sent to more than one address and so the same email is dealt with several times. This creates a duplication of effort which can easily be avoided.

Finally, could I ask that users please think very carefully before ringing the court with general enquiries? Calls on subjects such as will the Judge be robing and who will be hearing the case are time consuming and almost always unnecessary. A reminder that, as regards the latter, the information is always available on the Courtserve website.

We will keep this under review and would welcome any feedback.