Organising Documents on Caselines DCS for a Court Case

Contents

  1. 1 Introduction
    1. 1.1 Using DCS now that litigation has started
    2. 1.2 Don't give me access to your cloud storage
  2. 2 Organising documents in Caselines DCS
    1. 2.1 Smith v Jones - Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case
      1. 2.1.1 Pleadings
      2. 2.1.2 Court Orders
      3. 2.1.3 Claimant’s Expert Report
      4. 2.1.4 Defendant’s Expert Report
      5. 2.1.5 Claimant’s Witness Statements
      6. 2.1.6 Defendant’s Witness Statements
      7. 2.1.7  Notices about Evidence
    2. 2.2 Smith v Jones - My Documentary Evidence case
      1. 2.2.1 Audio and Video file placeholders
      2. 2.2.2 How to Arrange Exhibits
    3. 2.3 Smith v Jones - Documentary Evidence Disclosed by Other Side case
      1. 2.3.1 Audio and Video files
    4. 2.4 Smith v Jones - Complete set of Case Documents for Trial case
      1. 2.4.1 Pleadings
      2. 2.4.2 Court Orders
      3. 2.4.3 Notices about Evidence
      4. 2.4.4 Claimant’s Expert Report
      5. 2.4.5 Defendant’s Expert Report
      6. 2.4.6 Claimant’s Witness Statements
      7. 2.4.7 Defendant’s Witness Statements
      8. 2.4.8 Photographs
      9. 2.4.9 Other Documentary Evidence
    5. 2.5 Extra DCS Cases for Hearing Bundles
    6. 2.6 Smith v Jones - Comments on Statements case
    7. 2.7 Smith v Jones - For Costs Arguments case
      1. 2.7.1  Offers
      2. 2.7.2  Costs Orders 
      3. 2.7.3  Interim costs Schedules
      4. 2.7.4  Other documents relevant to costs
  3. 3 Organising Your Email Folders
    1. 3.1  Service 
    2. 3.2  ServiceEvidence
    3. 3.3  Advices
    4. 3.4  Settlement
    5. 3.5  CostsStatements 
    6. 3.6  CostsDisbursementsEvidence
    7. 3.7  CostsOther
    8. 3.8  CostsBehaviour
  4. 4 Paper files you should keep
    1. 4.1 Original signed formal litigation documents
    2. 4.2 Disclosure Documentation in two ring binders
  5. 5 Disclaimer


Introduction

Using DCS now that litigation has started

Everything you send or receive during the course of the litigation, including both correspondence about the case and formal litigation documents, will be automatically stored in your email system, but you will find that, as litigation proceeds over many months, you will end up with a large number of emails in your email system, so, whenever you receive, or send out, a key formal litigation document, you should store a copy of it in the appropriate location in Caselines Digital Case System (DCS), as described below, so that you can easily locate these important documents when needed as the case proceeds, and not have to search for them in your email system.

In addition to what is created by the litigation process itself (i.e. formal litigation documents and correspondence about the case), you will be sent by the other party, at the Disclosure of Documents stage, copies of their documentary evidence – e.g. photographs or documents which came into existence in the ordinary course of events in the past such as letters, invoices, written agreements, emails, diaries, logs etc. which are probative of issues in dispute in the litigation. These items of documentary evidence should be stored in as separate DCS “case” as should your own documentary evidence which you will be disclosing.

A word about terminology. The whole of the litigation is referred to as a "case" and the court will allocate a case number. But the DCS system also uses the word "case" to refer to a collection of documents (from which, if necessary, a "bundle" can easily be produced). So there will be several DCS cases for your single court case.  

Storing the above documents in DCS in the way described not only allows you to find key important documents quickly but also  means that you can use the DCS system to generate a Disclosure list (at the Disclosure of Documents stage) automatically and, most importantly, will allow you to deal with the process of the production of a Trial Bundle. Because the process of production of the Trial Bundle is a collaborative task between the parties, and the other party might be inefficient, it is essential to have all documents which might need to be included in the Trial Bundle ready in Caselines so that, if necessary, the Trial Bundle (or a Supplementary Trial Bundle if the other side is producing the Trial Bundle and refuses to include documents you require) can be produced quickly in time to meet the deadline for delivery which will normally be a week or two before the trial.


Don't give me access to your cloud storage

The DCS system is where I will look, from now on once you have set it up, for certain key documents as the litigation proceeds and you ask me to carry out work at each stage. Now that litigation is continuing, it would not be cost-effective for me to search through your cloud storage, so don't give me access to your cloud storage, but instead you should put copies of the key documents and relevant documentary evidence, in DCS as explained below under Organising documents in Caselines DCS.  

You will be granting me access to the DCS Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case, Offers and Comments on Statements case and Documentary Evidence cases, as described below, so that I can use them for reference each time you ask me to do the next piece of work as the litigation proceeds. I do not need access to your own cloud storage such as Google Drive - indeed it it best if you do not grant me access to your own cloud storage as, because of the way the human mind works, if I have access to your cloud storage you may start to think - perhaps subconsciously - that when doing each piece of work you ask me to do, I will be considering everything contained in your cloud storage when, in fact, it will be to the DCS Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements and Offers and Comments on Statements and Offers cases and documentary evidence cases that I will be turning to when carrying out each piece of work.

Apart from saving costs, a further reason why I use the documents in the DCS Documentary Evidence cases (and not your cloud storage) is that if key documents have been accidentally missed out of the DCS Documentary Evidence cases I am more likely to spot that if that is what I am working from. It is always your responsibility to ensure that the DCS Documentary Evidence cases (together with the DCS Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case for certain key litigation documents such as pleadings and court orders which are not actually documentary evidence) contain everything which will be needed at trial, and you should not rely on me happening to spot something missing, but if I work from the DCS documents that has the advantage that I might spot that something is missing if it happens be be something I am looking for as part of the particular piece of work I am doing at that point.       

When asking me to carry out each piece of work as the litigation proceeds, or in answering any questions I may have for you when I come to do each piece of work, there might be some additional document which you wish to show me and if, for example, the document is a recently received letter and it is not yet clear that that document is a relevant evidential document which needs to be used at trial - and so you have not yet loaded the document into the appropriate location in DCS - you might attach the document as a PDF to an email you send to me. Some people, particularly for large documents, find it more convenient to provide a temporary link rather than actually attaching the document to their email, and a temporary link to a specific document in your cloud storage in these circumstances is fine, but please do not grant me general access to your cloud storage. Ensuring that I do not have access to your cloud storage will remind you that it is your responsibility to ensure that the DCS Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements and Offers and Comments on Statements cases are up to date with the key documents they are designed to hold (but no other documents) and that all relevant disclosed documents (but only relevant documents) are in the DCS documentary evidence cases.            


Organising documents in Caselines DCS

In the Caselines Digital Case System (DCS) groups of documents are organised into what are called cases and, within each case, documents are further divided into sections. As shown below, you will initially need to create four DCS cases for your court case, and you may need, later on, to create further DCS cases to produce bundles for the trial and for any other court hearings. How to load documents to DCS is explained here.

The documents to be stored in each DCS case are shown in the tables below. As well as making sure you do store the key formal litigation documents in the correct sections in the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case as soon as you send or receive them, it is equally important that you do not store, in a DCS section, a document which does not belong there. If, for example, you were to store every piece of correspondence sent or received, into the sections of the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements intended for formal litigation documents, “just in case”, that would defeat the object because the important documents would be lost among the mass of more routine correspondence.


Smith v Jones - Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case


Section Title  Section
Letter
  
 Order Documents by What documents should be stored in the section

Pleadings

 
A
 
Date

 Pleading documents, otherwise known collectively as statements of case, are the documents in which each side seeks to define concisely the assertions it makes and to what extent it agrees with or disputes the assertions made by the other party. Pleading documents go by different names. In every contested case there will be at least a Claim Form and Particulars of Claim, and there will always be a Defence or a Defence and Counterclaim. In addition there may be further pleading documents such as a Reply to Defence, Reply to Defence and Defence to CounterclaimReply to Defence to Counterclaim, Answer to Request for Further Information, or Part 18 Answer.

Claim Form                                                             30 Jan 17 

Particulars of Claim                                                30 Jan 17

Defence                                                                    23 Feb 17

Court Orders


 B
 
Date

 Orders made by the court (e.g. about how the parties are to prepare for trial) and notices issued by the court such as a Notice of Hearing - e.g.

Order                                                                        27 Feb 17

If Pre-Trial Checklists have been ordered to be filed, copies of both side's Pre-Trial Checklists should be stored here also.

Claimant’s Expert Report

 
CR
 
Date

 Where the court gives the Claimant permission for an expert to be used, the Claimant’s expert’s report and the replies the expert gives to subsequent questions sent by either party are stored here – e.g.

Expert Report Mr Jenkins                                     14 Mar 17

Supplementary Expert Report Mr Jenkins          10 Apr 17

Mr Jenkins Replies to Questions                         23 Apr 17

Defendant’s Expert Report

 
DR
 
Date

 Where the court gives the Defendant permission for an expert to be used, the Defendant’s expert’s report and the replies the expert gives to subsequent questions sent by either party are stored here.

Claimant’s Witness Statements

 
CW
 
Title

 Signed witness statements of the Claimant and each of the Claimant’s witnesses, which have been served (or are about to be served).

Witness Statement of John Smith - 1st                 02 May 17

Witness Statement of Paul Davis - 2nd                  14 May 17

Any witness statements already used in the current proceedings for some purely procedural application (e.g. a witness statement from a process server explaining how documents were personally served) are not stored here if they will not need to be used at trial (they will have been stored in the DCS case used for the application hearing - see Cases for Hearings below).  

Any witness statements already used in the current proceedings (e.g. for an interim injunction application) which will (or might) be used at trial are stored here. 

Any witness statements (and exhibits) - or equivalent: statutory declaration, Land Registry Statement of Truth, etc - for other, previous litigation are not stored here. If they are relevant to the current proceedings they will be stored in the appropriate Documentary Evidence case.

Defendant’s Witness Statements

 
DW
 
Title

Signed witness statements of the Defendant and each of the Defendant’s witnesses, which have been served (or are about to be served).

Witness Statement of Jeremy Jones 1st                03 May 17

Witness Statement of Pamela Jenkins 1st             10 May 17

Any witness statements already used in the current proceedings for some purely procedural application (e.g. a witness statement from a process server explaining how documents were personally served) are not stored here if they will not need to be used at trial (they will have been stored in the DCS case used for the application hearing - see Cases for Hearings below).  

Any witness statements already used in the current proceedings (e.g. for an interim injunction application) which will (or might) be used at trial are stored here. 

Any witness statements (and exhibits) - or equivalent: statutory declaration, Land Registry Statement of Truth, etc - for other, previous litigation are not stored here. If they are relevant to the current proceedings they will be stored in the appropriate Documentary Evidence case.

 Exhibits E Title Exhibits referred to in the witness statements stored in the above two sections. (Separate copies of the documents in exhibits will also be stored in the appropriate Documentary Evidence case.)

Exhibit JJS01

 Notices about Evidence

 
N
 
Date
 
Notices about evidence sent by one party to another are stored here. This includes Notices under CPR Rule 33.6 regarding photographs and plans, and CPR 32.19 notices challenging the authenticity of documents. 

Notice under CPR 33.6                                         30 May 17

NB This section is for notices about evidence sent by one party to the other; it is not for notices (e.g. about hearings) sent out by the court which should be stored not in this section but in the Court Orders section.      



Smith v Jones - My Documentary Evidence case

This case, which contains your documentary evidence, has one section with a section letter of C, if you are  the Claimant, or D if you are the Defendant. 

Usually each document has an bates number prefix. The first document, for example, would have a prefix of C1 or D1.

  

 Section Letter Section TitleSection Order Order Docs byExamples of documents which might be stored in section
 
C
Claimant's Documents  
1
 
Date


Photo of Orchard                             17 Feb 1954

Conveyance Mardon to Hillfield     10 Apr 1982

AB123456 Transfer                           15 Jun 1998

Photo of Orchard                              17 Jun 1999

Letter Mardon to Hillfield                17 Aug 2002

XY654321 Transfer                          25 Nov 2010

Letter John Smith to Lucy Jones   15 Aug 2012

Agreement Smith and Jones          20 Sep 2012

Email at 10.20 Smith to Jones        15 Aug 2013

Photo of Orchard                             23 May 2014

Video of Orchard                              24 Mar 2018

AB123456 Register of Title              31 Mar 2018

AB123456 Title Plan                         31 Mar 2018


XY654321 Register of Title              31 Mar 2018

XY654321 Title Plan                         31 Mar 2018



Note: for those photographs which, have already been used as exhibits the document PDF will include the exhibit frontsheet and the exhibit number will be included in the name:

Exhibit JJS3 - Photo of Orchard     10 Apr 2018


  



Audio and Video file placeholders

Your documentary evidence includes not only written documents but also any relevant audio or video files (e.g. mp3 and mp4 files). You should store copies of these on cloud storage. Google Drive is a very convenient (and free) cloud storage system though you should note that it, like Gmail and all other Google systems, is hosted outside the United Kingdom and so may not be subject to the same data protection standards as apply within the United Kingdom. For each video or audio file, create a one page placeholder, select Get Shareable Link, and paste the link into the placeholder page so that the placeholder page looks something like this:


then store only the placeholder file in the My Documentary Evidence case.


Note: the reason why you should load any audio/video files to e.g. Google Drive (with just a placeholder page, containing a link, loaded to the My Documentary Evidence DCS case) rather than loading the audio/video files themselves to the My Documentary Evidence DCS case, is as follows. There can be serious consequences of not disclosing documents you should have disclosed. For example you may be barred from using, at trial, a document which is important to your case if you have not disclosed it by the deadline directed by the court. If there is a dispute about exactly what you disclosed and when, you need to be able to check and prove what was disclosed. If copies of documents have been provided to the other side only by giving them read access to the My Documentary Evidence DCS case, and inviting them to log on to that DCS case and download any documents they require copies of, it can sometimes be difficult to difficult to prove, later on, what was provided and when. At the time when the dispute arises you can see what the My Documentary Evidence DCS case then contains but what did it contain months earlier when you gave the other side read access, and at what point did they actually check it and download documents from it? To avoid these problems, you should not grant the other side read access to the My Documentary Evidence DCS case. This means that the audio/video files you allow them to read/download must be elsewhere - in Google Drive - accessible by clicking a link which you have pasted into a placeholder page in My Documentary Evidence DCS case. That placeholder page, which click-able link, will be disclosed, together with all the other documents in the My Documentary Evidence DCS, case when you download them in bulk as a bookmarked PDF and send them to the other side at the Disclosure of Documents stage.


How to Arrange Exhibits

If a document is to be used as evidence at a trial in a court, then unless the rules made special provision, the normal starting point would be that every document has to be vouched for by a witness who gives evidence saying what the document is. This, however, would be hugely inconvenient and lead to much duplication in the trial bundle, so, fortunately, the Civil Procedure Rules contain provisions which should mean that for the vast majority of documents, this is not necessary. For example, in most cases each party is required to disclose in advance the documents it will (or may) use at the trial and if the other party does not admit the authenticity of a disclosed document they have to serve notice of that, otherwise they a deemed to admit authenticity. This means that the vast majority of documents do not need to be exhibited by a witness but can simply be referred to, as necessary, in the witness statement by some obvious identifying feature (e.g. "the email from from John Smith to Peter Jones timed at 13.10 on 10 July 2017"). There are, however, some instances where it is necessary or desirable for specific documents to be exhibited by a witness:
  • If the authenticity of a document is disputed it will need to be exhibited by a witness who can speak to its authenticity (e.g. a witness who wrote and sent a letter can give evidence of that, exhibiting a copy of the letter)
  • Photographs should normally be exhibited. This is partly because there is often no convenient way of identifying a photograph other than by exhibiting it. Also evidence is needed of when the photo was taken and what it is a photo of
  • Some other documents may not contain an obvious identifying feature - e.g. a undated handwritten note - and these also need to be exhibited
  • If a witness statement is used to support an application it will normally need to exhibit every evidential document it refers to. This is because applications are heard quickly and there is no formal "disclosure process" or "agreeing trial bundle" process by which the other party could be deemed to admit authenticity of documents  

Exhibits should be stored in the above DCS cases in the following ways:-
  • Every Exhibit referred to in a witness statement in the Claimant's Witness Statements or Defendant's Witness Statements section of the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements DCS case, should be stored, with its Exhibit frontsheet giving the identifying number of the Exhibit (e.g. JJS12), in the same section as the signed witness statement which refers to it.
  • A copy of every document which is in an Exhibit referred to by you or one of your witnesses should also be stored in the My Documentary Evidence DCS case:-
    • If a single Exhibit contains a single photograph and no other documents (or up to 10 photographs of the same subject taken on the same day, and no other documents), and if the witness statement which refers to the Exhibit is your own witness statement, or is a witness statement (of anyone) which has, by the time the Disclosure of Documents stage is reached, already been served (e.g. because the witness statement was used in an interim application early on in the proceedings), a copy of the entire Exhibit can be stored in the appropriate section complete with frontsheet
    • Otherwise copies of the documents in the Exhibit should be stored individually and without frontsheet in the appropriate section       
The reason why, in the latter case, copies of the documents in an Exhibit are stored (in the My Documentary Evidence DCS case) without frontsheet is that (a) if there is more than one document, each document needs to be a separate PDF positioned in the normal chronological sequence and (b) even if an Exhibit contains a single document, if the witness statement referring to it has not yet been served (and is not your own witness statement) you do not want the presence of the Exhibit sheet (with its identifying number giving the initials of the witness) to, upon disclosure of documents, give the other side information about your witnesses in advance of exchange of witness statements.


Smith v Jones - Documentary Evidence Disclosed by Other Side case

This case is for documents you have recently received from the other party (or their solicitors) as part of disclosure (voluntary or compulsory)

Note: If the other side have provided copies of the disclosed documents in PDF form, one PDF per document with suitable names, it may be simpler to load them all, rather than check which ones are exactly identical (e.g. without extra annotations) to ones you already have, but if there are a large number of documents provided in less convenient form (e.g. on paper or all in a single PDF without suitable bookmarks) most of which are identical to ones you already have, it may be easier to first check them against your documents (in the My Documentary Evidence case) and only load up those which are additional or different. In this case the DCS case should be renamed Smith v Jones - Additional Documentary Evidence Disclosed by the Other Side. 

The main section in this case is identified by the letter C (if the other side is the Claimant) or D (if the other side is the Defendant). 


 Section Letter Section Title  Section Order Order Docs byExamples of documents which might be stored in section
 
D
Defendant's Documents 
1
 
Date

Photo of Orchard                          17 Feb 1999

Conveyance Lloyd to Briggs       10 Apr 1999

Letter Williams to Jenkins           13 Jul 2007

Letter Smith to Jones                   15 Aug 2012

Agreement Smith and Jones        20 Sep 2012

Email at 10.20 Smith to Jones      15 Aug 2013

Photo of Orchard                           23 May 2014


Usually each document has an bates number prefix. The first document, for example, would have a prefix of C1 or D1.

Some courts allow or require the parties to attach certain key items of documentary evidence as an appendix to their pleadings at the start of the case. Even if a party has provided documents at the start of the case in an appendix it is good practice, for completeness, for those documents to still be included in the party's Disclosure List (at the Disclosure of Documents stage) but, in case this is not done, you should create a section CV (if the other side are the Claimant) or DV (if the other side are the Defendant) in the Documentary Evidence Disclosed by Other Side case and store those documents there.


Audio and Video files

If the documents disclosed by the other side include any audio or video files (e.g. mp3 and mp4 files) you should store the audio/video itself on cloud storage such as Google Drive and create your own placeholder page with a link and store just that placeholder page in the Documentary Evidence Disclosed by Other Side DCS case. When doing this create one placeholder page for each video or audio file, select Get Shareable Link, and paste the link for the video/audio file into the placeholder page so that the placeholder page looks something like this:



Remember that:- 
  • you have an obligation to keep new documents disclosed by the other side confidential and not use them except for the purposes of the court case they are disclosed in (unless you have the other side's permission, or the court's permission to use them more widely)
  • Google Drive is hosted outside the United Kingdom and so may not be subject to the same data protection standards as apply in the United Kingdom so check with the other side that they agree to you loading audio/video files disclosed by them in this way. If they do not agree, create a placeholder file without a link just indicating how the video/audio files are stored - e.g. "Video of Farm Buildings 17 June 2017 - on USB Drive".

Smith v Jones - Complete set of Case Documents for Trial case

Initially it is important to have the My Documentary Evidence case separate from other DCS cases so that it can be used at the Disclosure of Documents stage but, once the further stage of Exchange of Witness Statements has been reached and passed, it is convenient to rename the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case to be named Complete set of Case Documents for Trial and for extra sections to be created in it for the documentary evidence (both documentary evidence from the My Documentary Evidence case and the Documents Disclosed by Other Side case. The documents from the latter two cases are then copied into the new sections in the Complete set of Case Documents for Trial case.
         

Section Title Section
Letter
  
 Order Documents byWhat documents should be stored in the section

Pleadings

 
A
 
Date

Claim Form                                                             30 Jan 17 

Particulars of Claim                                                30 Jan 17

Defence                                                                    23 Feb 17

Court Orders


 B
 
Date

 Orders made by the court (e.g. about how the parties are to prepare for trial) and notices issued by the court such as a Notice of Hearing - e.g.

Order                                                                        27 Feb 17

If Pre-Trial Checklists have been ordered to be filed, copies of both side's Pre-Trial Checklists should be stored here also.
 

Notices about Evidence

 C  
Notices about evidence sent by one party to another are stored here. This includes Notices under CPR Rule 33.6 regarding photographs and plans, and CPR 32.19 notices challenging the authenticity of documents. 

Notice under CPR 33.6                                         30 May 17

NB This section is for notices about evidence sent by one party to the other; it is not for notices (e.g. about hearings) sent out by the court which should be stored not in this section but in the Court Orders section.     

Claimant’s Expert Report

 
D
 
Date

Expert Report Mr Jenkins                                     14 Mar 17

Supplementary Expert Report Mr Jenkins          10 Apr 17

Mr Jenkins Replies to Questions                         23 Apr 17

Defendant’s Expert Report

 
E
 
Date

Expert Report Mr Philps                                     20 Mar 17

Mr Philps Replies to Questions                         20 Apr 17

Claimant’s Witness Statements

 
F
 
Title

 Signed witness statements of the Claimant and each of the Claimant’s witnesses, which have been served.

Witness Statement of John Smith - 1st                 02 May 17

Witness Statement of Paul Davis - 2nd                  14 May 17

Defendant’s Witness Statements

 
G
 
Title

Signed witness statements of the Defendant and each of the Defendant’s witnesses, which have been served.

Witness Statement of Jeremy Jones 1st                03 May 17

Witness Statement of Pamela Jenkins 1st             10 May 17
 

Photographs

 
H

Date
 
C1 Exhibit JJS01 - Photo of Orchard     17 Feb 1954

C4 Exhibit JJS02 - Photo of Orchard     17 Jun 1999

C15 Exhibit JJS03 - Photo of Orchard     10 Apr 2018

D7 Exhibit PJ01 - Photo of Orchard       23 May 2014

 

Other Documentary Evidence

 
I
 
Date

C2 Conveyance Mardon to Hillfield     10 Apr 1982

C3 AB123456 Transfer                          15 Jun 1998

D2 Conveyance Lloyd to Briggs          10 Apr 1999

C5 Letter Mardon to Hillfield                17 Aug 2002

D3 Letter Williams to Jenkins                13 Jul 2007

C6 XY654321 Transfer                           25 Nov 2010

C7 Letter John Smith to Lucy Jones    15 Aug 2012

D4 Letter Smith to Jones                       15 Aug 2012

C8 Agreement Smith and Jones            20 Sep 2012

D5 Agreement Smith and Jones            20 Sep 2012

C9 Email at 10.20 Smith to Jones          15 Aug 2013

D6 Email at 10.20 Smith to Jones          15 Aug 2013

C11 AB123456 Register of Title              31 Mar 2018

C12 AB123456 Title Plan                         31 Mar 2018


C13 XY654321 Register of Title              31 Mar 2018

C14 XY654321 Title Plan                         31 Mar 2018

 
All Exhibits
 
J
 
Title
All exhibits referred to in witness statements.

Exhibit JJ01

Exhibit JJ02


The above DCS case should contain all documents which might, in theory, be needed in the Trial Bundle. In practice some documents - particularly in the Other Documentary Evidence section - will not need to be included in the trial bundle (e.g. duplicates in this section would not be included in the trial bundle and it may be that some documents neither party wishes to rely on) and for these documents the Included tickbox in DCS would be unticked so that the document does not appear in the generated Trial Bundle PDF.

If it is the other side, rather than you, which has been directed to assemble a trial bundle, you will need to tell the other side what documents you require to be included in it and in practice this is best done by creating a DCS bundle named  Smith v Jones – Documents for inclusion in Trial Bundle. 




Important Note It is important that you do not store, in the DCS cases and sections shown above, documents which do not belong there. If, for example, you were to store every piece of correspondence sent or received, in sections intended for formal litigation documents, “just in case”, that would defeat the object because the important documents would be lost among the mass of more routine correspondence. When the times comes to create a bundle containing documents directly relating to a particular forthcoming hearing, this can often be done by generating a sub-bundle with a subset of documents from the above DCS case, but if that is not possible because there are extra documents which need to be in the bundle for a specific hearing (e.g. correspondence about some procedural matter which would not need to be used at the eventual trial) then a hearing bundle should be produced by creating a new and separate DCS case, to contain the documents required for that hearing (some of which may be copied from the above cases), not by adding documents to the above cases which do not belong there.
               

Extra DCS Cases for Hearing Bundles

As explained above, a Trial Bundle - to be used at the trial at the end of the case - is created from the above DCS case by ticking/unticking the Included box for documents as appropriate. 

If there are other short court hearings before the trial, you may need, when the time comes, to create a new and separate DCS case specifically to produce a bundle for a particular short court hearing. During the course of litigation, before the eventual trial, one side or the other might make an application to the court for an interim order to, for example, preserve the status quo or give temporary relief pending the trial. In such cases it will often be that all the documents needed for an application bundle are in the above DCS case and a bundle can be generated from a subset of documents. But if the application is more of a procedural matter there may be extra documents which need to be in the application bundle which, because they are procedural only, and not necessary for the eventual trial, will not be in the above DCS case, and in this situation an application hearing bundle would be produced by creating a new and separate DCS case, to contain the documents required just for that hearing (some of which may be copied from the above DCS case and some added).

As well as specific applications made to the court which are in some sense contentious, there may be, early on in the litigation, a case management hearing - usually called a Case Management Conference  or CMC - which is more administrative in nature and may be concerned with giving directions about how the parties are to prepare, over the coming months, for the eventual trial, setting appropriate deadlines for each step. To save costs in cases where the directions are likely to be relatively straightforward, the court may simply read each party's proposed directions (which each party submits with the Directions Questionnaire) and issue directions without holding a case management hearing (if this happens the parties have the right, upon receiving the order giving the directions, to ask the court to re-consider). If there is to be a hearing a short hearing bundle will be required. If the court is going to decide "on the papers" without a hearing, the court may still require the claimant to assemble and lodge a bundle for the judge's/master's use when making the decision on the papers because that is quicker and easier to use than looking through the court file.

All bundles (whether bundles produced by ticking the Included box for documents in an existing DCS case, or new separate DCS cases set up purely to produce a bundle for a specific hearing) should be kept intact after the hearings they were produced for because although an application or a CMC results in a court order, and it is normally only the order which needs subsequently to be referred to, occasionally it happens that some occurrence in the future means that some document used in the earlier application hearing or directions hearing, which is not contained in the other DCS cases, needs to be consulted. 

Once the trial has ended and the judge has pronounced judgment, that it normally the end of the litigation (barring any enforcement action which may be necessary, and any assessment of costs if that was not carried out at the end of the trial) but occasionally one side or the other may appeal to a higher court and, in that case, a new and separate DCS case is set up to produce an appeal bundle.

At any stage of the litigation a party can make an offer to settle. Often it is agreed that there will be a formal mediation, conducted by a professional mediator, and, if there is a mediation, usually a mediation bundle to be used by the parties and the mediator is produced by setting up a new and separate DCS case.


Smith v Jones - Comments on Statements case

This case is for confidential notes and documents which will be used by your barrister at trial but which are not to be included in the Trial Bundle.
  
Section Title Section
Letter 
 
 Order Documents byWhat documents should be stored in the section

 Comments on Witness Statements

 
Z
 
Title
 
 Your witness statement, and the statements of your witnesses (which are stored in the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case) should cover everything relevant which you/the witness has knowledge of. However sometimes, after witness statements are exchanged (towards the end of the litigation process not long before the trial) additional comments need to be made by your or by your witnesses about what the other side's witnesses have said in their witness statements. The other side's witnesses may have described an event in a different way from you and your barrister will need to know to what extent what they say is essentially correct (and maybe just a matter of different words or emphasis) and to what extent you disagree with the substance of what they say. Such confidential comments are stored here for use by your barrister in cross-examination at the trial.

John Smith - comments on statement of Jeremy Jones 
  15 Jun 17

John Smith - comments on statement of Phillip Murray   16 Jun 17

Paula Smith - comments on statement of Jeremy Jones   16 Jun 17


Also to be stored in this section is any proof of evidence. In many cases you will have given a witness statement at an early stage (e.g. in support of an application for a temporary interim injunction at the start of the case) and in some cases the basic facts are relatively simple so that they are covered in your pleadings (even though pleadings have to be concise) but where this is not the case (i.e. relatively complicated facts and no witness statements produced for interim relief) normally a proof of evidence will be taken at an early stage so that your barrister knows what your detailed recollection of events is, even before your first witness statement (which will cover only the issues still in dispute) is produced towards the end of the case in preparation for the trial. Any such proof of evidence is also stored in this section.

If a witness statement has been taken from a witness whom it is decided not to use as a witness (i.e. neither use as a live witness nor on the basis of putting forward just their statement) then the statement should be stored here (and not in the Pleadings, Orders and Witness Statements case) to ensure that it is not accidentally exchanged.




Smith v Jones - For Costs Arguments case

This case is for documents which might be used in arguments about costs at the end of a hearing once the judge has given judgment. 
  
Section Title Section
Letter 
 
 Order Documents byWhat documents should be stored in the section

 Offers

 
XA
 
Date
 
 Offers from one party to the other (whether open offers, Part 36 offers, without prejudice except as to costs offers, or Calderbank offers) and any responses (e.g. explaining why an offer is not accepted, requesting further information, etc). If one party proposes mediation but mediation does not take place then the letter proposing mediation, and any reply declining mediation, should be stored here.

Letter Defendant to Claimant                             28 Feb 17

NB Offers and responses which are unqualifiedly without prejudice (i.e. without prejudice rather than without prejudice except as to costs) are not stored here because these cannot be shown to the judge even after judgment.

Initial letters proposing/or refusing mediation are normally without prejudice except as to costs and so would be stored here, but any documents produced during, or in preparation for, mediation itself will be unqualifiedly without prejudice (even if they do not explicitly say so) and are not stored here.  

 Costs Orders 



 

 
XB
 
Date
 
 This section contains all orders the court has already made about costs. For example at a previous hearing a judge may have made a cost capping order or may have approved a party's costs budget (in this case the budget as well as the order approving it should be included). At a previous application hearing the judge might have ordered one side or the other to pay the costs of a previous application so that those costs have already been dealt with and should not be counted again. Or at a previous hearing the judge might have made "no order as to costs" which means that neither side can claim costs associated with that hearing whatever the final outcome of the case, so, again, those costs must not be included in the costs claimed by a party. Or at a previous hearing the judge may have ordered "costs reserved" which means that (unless dealt with subsequently at a further hearing before trial) the trial judge decides who should pay the costs of the previous hearing (this would be the case anyway but the judge ordering "costs reserved" is indicating to the trial judge - who may be a different judge and, even if the same judge, is unlikely to remember all details of the previous hearing - that the costs of the previous hearing should not necessarily be awarded to the eventual winner of the case). 

 Interim costs Schedules

 
XC
 
Date

 At the litigation proceeds through various stages either party may have provided an interim schedule of costs incurred or an estimate of costs to be incurred. These should be stored here.

 Other documents relevant to costs

 
XD
 
Date
 
 This section is not for documents which may be useful for assessment of costs (deciding how much a party ordered to pay costs should pay) but for documents which may be relevant to arguments about who should pay costs or whether they should pay the costs (whatever they are after assessment) for the whole period of the litigation or for a particular part of the litigation. An example of documents stored here would be correspondence pointing out that a party's conduct in the litigation process itself has unnecessarily increased costs.



Important Note: The above DCS case is not for documents which may be useful for assessment of costs (deciding how much a party ordered to pay costs should pay) but for documents which may be relevant to arguments about who should pay costs or whether they should pay the costs (whatever they are after assessment) for the whole period of the litigation or for a particular part of the litigation. An example of documents stored here would be correspondence pointing out that a party's conduct in the litigation process itself has unnecessarily increased costs. Interim costs schedules (if there are any) are included in the case only for the purpose of giving a rough assessment of the proportion of costs incurred at different stages of the litigation process (not for the purposes of assessment of costs).
    


Saving PDF copies of Bundles

As explained above, whenever there is a court hearing a hearing bundle will need to be produced, either by you or by the other side. If the hearing bundle is produced by you using Caselines DCS it will be produced in PDF form before it is printed and you should save the bundle PDF (on your computer or in cloud storage). Although, once used for a hearing, a bundle should be kept intact and unchanged in DCS, there is always the possibility of it being changed by mistake (you might amend it by mistake when you intended to update one of the general reference cases for example), so you should retain the bundle PDF as it was when you printed it out and created the hardcopy bundle, so that for each hearing you have an exact copy of what the hardcopy bundle contained.   

               

Organising Your Email Folders

Virtually all correspondence you send or receive in the course of litigation will be automatically stored in your email system. This even includes much correspondence received by post because some of that you will be emailing that to me and asking me to advise you. Likewise you will be emailing to me PDF copies of any signed letters you send out by post which you have asked me to draft. Because searchable email folders are so convenient, people sometimes, even if they have no other reason to send by email, scan things in as PDFs and email them to themselves so that they can store them in a convenient email folder. For example if you receive an invoice for a disbursement by post, you could scan it in, email it to yourself, and store it in the CostsDisbursementsEvidence folder (as well as keeping the paper original).  

I would suggest that you have a high-level folder for emails relating to the case (named - e.g. Smith v Jones) to keep them separate from other emails, such as your personal emails, and that below that high-level folder you have at least the following sub-folders.    


 Service 

 Any emails from me advising how to validly file and serve formal documents. Also any correspondence sent by you or received by you which notifies an address for service or a change of address for service of formal documents (including any correspondence notifying a change of solicitor representing the other party). Any notification by the court of a change of address of the court centre dealing with the case.

 ServiceEvidence

  Evidence of how and when you served particular documents on parties. This includes both documents provided to you by others - such as a certificate of posting provided by the Post Office - and Certificates of Service  which you complete and sign. Usually these never need to be referred to but occasionally they can be important. For example, if a court grants an injunction then the court order will normally need to be personally served on the person to whom the court order applies and a Certificate of Service completed. If, at some time in the future, the person disobeys the court order then the Certificate of Service will be needed for a committal application, but in 99% of cases court orders are obeyed (as nobody wants to go to prison) so that the Certificate of Service is not usually needed.
 
 Disclosure  Emails by which you provide copies of documents to the other side during the disclosure process and emails received from the other side.

 Advices

 Opinions and Advices written by me.

 Settlement

 Correspondence between parties which aims to achieve a settlement. 
 

 CostsStatements 

 Costs budgets, estimates of costs, and statements of costs filed by either party as the case proceeds. Also Disclosure Reports (giving estimate of costs of disclosure of documents).

 CostsDisbursementsEvidence

 Supporting evidence of disbursements in the case. 

This may include invoices from barristersexpert witnesses, mediators and from any commercial document scanning or printing service you use, and for court fees. Also any invoices associated with obtaining evidence – e.g. charges for copies of historical aerial photographs. Invoices can include expenditure before proceedings commenced (e.g. pre-action advice from a barrister or solicitor).

 CostsOther

 Most people, in order to increase the likelihood of the trial judge carrying out a (fast) summary assessment of costs at the end of the trial will want to put forward a Statement of Costs for Summary Assessment at the trial which just includes disbursements (on the basis that if it includes small items as well the judge may be more inclined to order the long and costly process of Detailed Assessment for which a specialist Costs Lawyer would need to be engaged). However if, for whatever reason, Detailed Assessment is ordered normally information about all expenditure (not just Disbusements) is provided to the Costs Lawyer and to cater for this possibility all emails relevant to expenditure, however small, can be stored here. 
 
  

 CostsBehaviour

 Any correspondence in which one party accuses the other of unreasonable litigation behaviour. Most cases are about behaviour which could be described as unreasonable but if the way a party behaves in the litigation itself is unreasonable (e.g. missing deadlines or bombarding the other party with long repetitive emails) relevant emails would be stored here as they may be relevant to the order the court eventually makes about who should pay the costs of the litigation itself. 


If a matter arises in the litigation which you ask my advice on, I might ask you to quickly provide me with PDF copies of the relevant emails which you have sent or received, particularly if an application is to be made for an interim order. You could simply create PDF copies of emails when I request them but, in case something arises urgently and time is short, you might want to plan ahead and set up Cloud HQ to ensure that whenever you send or receive an email a PDF copy is automatically created in your cloud storage (e.g. in Google Drive) so that if I should ever need to ask for a PDF copy of any email, you can quickly send it to me. Note that using CloudHQ will result in your data being processed outside the United Kingdom.

Paper files you should keep

Original signed formal litigation documents

The original signed copies of court documents which have been filed/served (e.g. pleadings and witness statements) should be kept in a paper file in case the court should require them to be produced.

Disclosure Documentation in two ring binders





Disclaimer

This information page is designed to be used only by clients of John Antell who have entered into an agreement for the provision of legal services. The information in it is necessarily of a general nature and is intended to be used only in conjunction with specific advice to the individual client about the individual case. This information page should not be used by, or relied on, by anyone else.

The information on this page about specific computer techniques is provided for information purposes only. Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate and up to date at the time it was written but no responsibility for its accuracy, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by me. You should satisfy yourself, before using any of the techniques, software or services described, that the techniques are appropriate for your purposes and that the software or service is reliable.


This page was lasted updated in April 2018 Disclaimer