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Examining witness recollection in disputes

10 May 2022 | 14:15 - 15:15 (BST)
London International Disputes Week


Mrs Justice Cockerill, Judge in Charge of the Commercial Court of England & Wales; Paul Downes QC, Barrister, Quadrant Chambers; Jason Galbraith-Marten QC, Director, Assurety Training and Barrister, Cloisters; Brian King, Independent Arbitrator and Associate Member, 3 Verulam Buildings; Sibylle Schumacher, Partner, Pinsent Masons (Germany)

What this session will cover

There has been renewed focus in the last year on the nature and value of witness evidence in dispute resolution. New rules and guidance were introduced in England and Wales last April prescribing how factual witness evidence is to be taken and limiting the scope of such evidence in court, and the ICC’s report on the accuracy of witness memory essentially called into question the role that witness evidence should play in determining factual disputes.

This session will explore:

  • What value does witness evidence have in dispute resolution and how do you elicit the best evidence?
  • Does the current approach of the English courts to the way in which witness evidence is given achieve the right balance between the needs of the tribunal and administration of justice, cost efficiency for parties and the impact on witnesses, including their wellbeing and reputation?
  • What role, if any, does witness preparation have in dispute resolution – from the perspective of the tribunal, parties and witnesses themselves (including foreign witnesses)?
  • What lessons might the English courts learn from the approach to these issues in other jurisdictions, and what do foreign parties need to know about the process of giving evidence here?