BCCI, Equitable teams attend judge summit

The legal teams involved in the controversial BCCI and Equitable Life cases have been summoned to explain their roles at the high-level judges’ meeting on case management reform taking place at the end of this month (October).

Barlow Lyde & Gilbert, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Herbert Smith and Lovells are among the representatives of the profession and the judiciary preparing papers ahead of the meeting, which takes place on 30 October.

As revealed exclusively by The Lawyer (31 July), Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, the Lord Chief Justice, set up the symposium in response to criticism of current court procedure following the settlement of Equitable Life’s negligence case against Ernst & Young, and the collapse of the liquidators of BCCI’s claim against the Bank of England.

Both claims had been struck out by High Court judges at first instance before being given the go-ahead by the House of Lords. BCCI came in for particular censure due to the lengthy opening statements made by both parties and the hefty costs incurred.

A spokesperson for the office of the Lord Chief Justice said short written contributions had been requested from those invited to the event, who include solicitors and barristers as well as commercial court judges.

Both Lord Phillips and the Master of the Rolls Sir Anthony Clarke are expected to attend the meeting.