Virtual trials in a coronavirus world: how it works in practice

As we enter a period in which in-person trials may no longer be possible for some time, Linklaters has been acting in one of the first fully “virtual” trials in English Commercial Court proceedings involving factual and expert witnesses located across the globe, several of whom require an interpreter whilst giving their evidence.

Below, we share two briefing notes which detail our experiences.

In the first (click here) we examine the pragmatic attitude of English judges to trials in light of Covid-19 and the practical steps the parties took to enable a remote hearing to take place (for example; finding a suitable video conferencing platform, testing of software and hardware, and other logistical issues)

In the second (click here), we look at how the virtual trial has worked in practice and provide tips on the process.
In short, the virtual trial has been a success and has proved that, notwithstanding the global health crisis, even large commercial disputes can continue to be heard.

Although the above concerns trials in the English Commercial Court these developments will be of interest to arbitration practitioners; both in terms of the logistics of managing proceedings before the tribunal itself and the approach the English court may take to managing arbitration related proceedings before it.