The 2022 edition of the Chancery Guide is published and comes into force today.
The Practice Note of the Chancellor of the High Court, also published today, gives effect to the Guide.
Apart from the Practice Notes and Directions listed in the Schedule attached to that Practice Note, all other Chancery Division Practice Notes and Directions have been revoked, on the basis that so far as relevant they are otherwise incorporated in the new Chancery Guide.
The 2022 edition is the first new edition of the guide since 2016.
It has been wholly re-written by a cross-disciplinary team working under the editors, Fancourt J and Master Kaye, to reflect best practice and substantial changes in the working of the courts since the last edition and in particular since the Business and Property Courts were set up in July 2017. It is an online, digital edition with hyperlinks to all rules, practice directions, statutes and authorities referred to in the text.
The Chancery Guide has been amended so that it explicitly applies to cases in the Chancery lists in all Business and Property Court District Registries as well as in the Rolls Building.
Further guidance will be published on the Judiciary website reflecting local differences in practice in the District Registries, but subject to that, the Chancery Guide applies in full.
There are some substantial changes in the 2022 Guide.
In part, these aim to align the practice of the Chancery Division with the other courts in the Business and Property Courts, where sensible to do so. See in particular Chapters 14 and 15 relating to applications. Guidance is provided on further areas of practice, in particular accounts and inquiries and property disputes. There are now page limits that apply to statements of case and skeleton arguments. There is up to date guidance on electronic bundles and remote and hybrid hearings.
Court users should not assume that the previous guidance remains the same in all areas and are encouraged to read the relevant parts of the Guide when using the courts.