CPR Amendments – 21st DECEMBER 2020 Update
126th Practice Direction Update to the Civil Procedure Rules (BREXIT)
The Master of the Rolls and the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State have signed the 126th Practice Direction (PD) Update.
The 126th PD Update (PDF, opens in a new tab), PD Update (the 107th) which makes amendments to various PDs in consequence of EU Exit and is due to come into force at the same time as the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 (S.I. 2019/521) which comes into force on Implementation (IP) completion day (11.00 p.m. on 31 December 2020). The new amendments are minor modifications to ensure, or consequential on changes made to existing EU Exit instruments to ensure, alignment with the Withdrawal Agreement.
The changes effected by this PD Update are to:
- Transitional Provision and PD re Applications for a Warrant under the Competition Act 1989
These amendments are to cater for the provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement which provide for the European Commission to have continued competence after IP completion day in relation to certain matters which took place or were commenced before IP completion day. Where the Withdrawal Agreement does not apply, those matters will become matters within the competence of the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The 107th Update makes amendments so that the procedural provisions of certain PDs refer to the CMA rather than the Commission. This new transitional provision disapplies those amendments for the transitional cases where the Commission continues to have competence, so that for those cases, the relevant PDs will refer to the Commission.
- PD 31C – Disclosure and Inspection in relation to Competition Claims
This simply changes a reference to “exit day” in an amendment made by the 107th Update so that it refers to “IP completion day”, consistently with the Withdrawal Agreement and the changes made by the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020.
- Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) – Change of Address
The amendments made by the 107th Update to PD 52D (Statutory Appeals and Appeals subject to Special Provisions) and PD – Competition Law (Claims relating to the application of Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty and Chapters I and II of Part I of the Competition Act 1998) are updated to reflect the CMA’s correct address.
- PD – Application for a Warrant under the Competition Act 1998
These amendments are made to cater for the fact that, as a result of the Withdrawal Agreement, provision made by the State Aid (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 will no longer be required, and those Regulations are withdrawn. Accordingly, it removes from the amendments made by the 107th Update references to the 2019 Regulations and provision catering for the operation of those Regulations, which are no longer required.