How the division is managed and matters can be listed.
The Commercial Division hears matters relating to the recovery of debt, claims for damages, trusts and more.
It provides fast, cost-effective and fair resolutions in commercial disputes.
This is achieved through minimal interlocutory appearances, the availability of trial dates within six months of first administrative mention, extremely low rates of cases not reached and fast average time to judgment.
Nearly 50 per cent of all civil initiations in the County Court are now within the Commercial Division. It is a high-volume jurisdiction – there are more than 2600 initiations each year.
There is no monetary limit on the County Court’s jurisdiction in civil disputes.
The Court is currently running four surveys for practitioners participating in Commercial Division pre-trial directions hearings, summonses and directions hearings, judicial resolution conferences and trials on Zoom. Practitioners are welcomed to complete the following surveys:
Judge Woodward is the head of the division, which is established under Order 34A.02 of the County Court Civil Procedure Rules 2018.
Proceedings are entered in the Commercial Division and the relevant list by the plaintiff’s practitioner.
The practitioner should complete the Request to enter list form at the time the proceeding is issued. Filing an appearance triggers the administrative mention procedure, except for proceedings in the Expedited List.
The Court then sends a notice to the parties requiring them to submit consent orders. In most cases, parties are expected to resolve issues that arise during the interlocutory stages, which ensures the case progresses to a hearing date at the earliest opportunity.
If the parties do not agree on appropriate interlocutory directions, the Court should be contacted to nominate a date for a directions hearing to discuss these matters.
This can be done through the Commercial Registry or, in the case of the Expedited List, the associate to the judicial registrars.
Interlocutory hearings are managed by either the duty judge or a judicial registrar.
The head of the Commercial Division also manages all circuit proceedings.