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England: “Nightingale Courts” Aim to Relieve Pandemic Backlog of Court Cases

(Mar. 29, 2021) England’s court administration agency, Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS), has introduced additional venues to be used as temporary courts to ease pressure on the courts and clear a backlog of cases. The backlog was caused in part by the closure of half the courts across England in March 2020 in […]

International: New ICSID Caseload Statistics Reveal Trends in Arbitral Appointments and Case Distribution

(Feb. 22, 2021) On January 28, 2021, the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) published its caseload statistics for the first six months of 2020 (FY2020). Some had predicted that disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic would have a significant impact on the number and type of investment disputes brought to ICSID […]

Great Britain: House of Commons Advances Bill to Limit Criminal Prosecution of Veterans for Acts Committed during Overseas Operations

(Oct. 7, 2020) On September 23, 2020, the Overseas Operations (Service Personnel and Veterans) Bill received its second reading in the British House of Commons and progressed through to the Committee stage with a comfortable majority. The bill aims to provide certainty for Service personnel and veterans by protecting them from vexatious legal claims for […]

Turkey: Parliament Passes Major Amendments to Law on Legal Practitioners

(July 17, 2020) On July 10, 2020, Turkey’s parliament passed into law a bill amending Law No. 1136 on Legal Practitioners (LLP). The new law allows new bar associations to be established in populous provinces, and significantly changes the system for the distribution of delegates representing provincial bar associations in the Union of Turkish Bar […]

Germany: Federal Court of Justice Rules on Legal Tech

(Dec. 23, 2019) On November 27, 2019, the German Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof, BGH), Germany’s supreme court for civil and criminal cases, held that the services provided by the company Lexfox, which is registered as a legal services provider for collection services, did not violate the German Legal Services Act. The decision was highly […]

Germany: Court Prohibits Legal Contract Generator Platform

(Oct. 31, 2019) On October 8, 2019, the Higher Regional Court of Cologne held that the services provided by a legal contract generator platform violated the German Legal Services Act. It instructed the owner of the contract platform to cease its operations and stop advertising it. Applicable Law The Legal Services Act defines a legal […]

Brazil: Brazilian Bar Association Decides Violence Against Women, the Elderly, Children, Adolescents, and Persons with Physical and Mental Disabilities Precludes Membership

(Apr. 3, 2019) On March 18, 2019, the plenary of the Federal Council of the Brazilian Bar Association (Conselho Federal da Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil, CFOAB) enacted a decision (súmula) disqualifying law graduates who had committed aggression and violence against women from enrolling in the Bar. (Conselho Pleno Decide que Violência Contra a Mulher […]

Italy: Right to Strike in Essential Public Services

(Oct. 2, 2018) On July 27, 2018, the Italian Constitutional Court issued a decision incidentally on the constitutional legitimacy of the right to strike by certain government employees (in this case, public defenders) providing essential public services. (Decision No. 180 of July 27, 2018, Issued in a Constitutional Legitimacy Case by Incidental Procedure (the Decision), […]

China: Eight Laws Amended to Require New, Unified National Legal Profession Qualification Examination

(Nov. 10, 2017) On September 1, 2017, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee (NPCSC) of China passed a decision on amending eight laws to institute a new unified national legal profession qualification exam, officially retiring the current unified national judicial exam established in 2010.  (Quanguo Renmin Daibiao Dahui Changwu Weiyuan Hui Guanyu Xiugai Zhongguo Renmin […]

Netherlands: Mandatory Digital Litigation Extended to Asylum and Detention Cases

(June 15, 2017) According to the Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice, beginning on June 12, 2017, a new system of simplified, digital litigation will be used for all asylum and detention cases handled by all courts in the Netherlands and, as of September 1, the new system will be required for claims cases requiring legal representation […]