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A Practical Approach to Effective Litigation

A Practical Approach to Effective Litigation (8th edn)

Susan Blake
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date: 30 November 2023

11. Making Strategic Use of the Pre-Action Stagelocked

11. Making Strategic Use of the Pre-Action Stagelocked

  • Susan BlakeSusan BlakeDirector of Studies and Associate Dean, Inns of Court School of Law


This chapter focuses on the pre-action stage of the litigation process. Most civil disputes are settled prior to the issue of any proceedings. Save where a pre-issue application is appropriate, no court will be involved. Nonetheless the approach taken to resolving the dispute will be shaped to a significant extent by the view a court might take if proceedings were to be issued. The chapter discusses the Practice Direction Pre-Action Conduct, which seeks to enable parties to settle disputes without the need to start proceedings, and to support the efficient management by the; pre-action protocols, which set out the steps that the parties should follow before issuing proceedings; steps in preparing a case; forming the relationship with the other side; deciding when to issue proceedings; and portal claims.

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