PRACTICE DIRECTION 36X – PILOT PROVISION: PROCEEDING BY ELECTRONIC MEANS: CERTAIN PROCEEDINGS FOR A MATRIMONIAL ORDER

PLEASE NOTE THIS PD COMES INTO FORCE ON 13 SEPTEMBER 2021

This practice direction supplements rule 36.2 FPR (transitional arrangements and pilot schemes)

1.1       This practice direction is made under rule 36.2 FPR. It is intended to assess modifications to Practice Direction 41A to make the use of electronic means via the online system referred to in Practice Direction 41A mandatory for an applicant who is legally represented.

1.2 This practice direction comes into force on 13th September 2021 and expires at the end of the day on 5th April 2022.

1.3 While this practice direction is in force, Practice Direction 41A is modified as follows-

(a) in the heading to paragraph 2.1 after “may” insert “or must”;

(b) in paragraph 2.1, for “An application” substitute “Subject to paragraph 2.1A, an application”;

(c) after paragraph 2.1 insert-

2.1A Subject to paragraph 2.1B, an application must proceed by electronic means where-

(a) all of the conditions in paragraph 2.1(a), (b), (d) and (e) are met; and

(b) the applicant is legally represented.

2.1B    Paragraph 2.1A does not apply when the online system is not available for use because of-

(a) planned “down time” for system maintenance or upgrades; or

(b) unplanned “down-time” because of, for example, a system failure or power outage or some other unplanned circumstance.”;

(d) in paragraph 3.1 after “enables” insert “(or, where paragraph 2.1A applies, this practice direction requires)”;

(e) after paragraph 7.1 insert-

7.1A Where paragraph 2.1A applies, an application for a matrimonial order must be created via the online system.”;

(f) at the end of paragraph 10.4 insert-

“Where paragraph 2.1A applies, the applicant must use the online system to take further steps in the proceedings.”;

(g) after paragraph 13.1 insert-

13.1A Where paragraph 2.1A applies, any application made by the applicant for the court to consider the making of a decree nisi in the proceedings must be made-

(a) using the online system; and

(b) at a point in time specified in paragraph 13.1(a) or (b).”; and

(h) after paragraph 15.1 insert-

15.1A Where paragraph 2.1A and 15.1 both apply, the applicant must give the notice referred to in paragraph 15.1 using the online system.”.

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