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124th Practice Direction Update to the Civil Procedure Rules – Coronavirus Pandemic related and The Civil Procedure (Amendment No.5) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020


The Civil Procedure (Amendment No.5) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020 have been laid before Parliament. This follows the Lord Chancellor giving written notice to the Civil Procedure Rule Committee under s. 3A Civil Procedure Act 1997 that he thought it expedient that the Committee include provision in the rules that would extend the stay on possession proceedings.

The rules amend the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 Part 55 to extend the existing stay on all possession proceedings brought under this Part and all enforcement proceedings by way of writ or warrant of possession. In consequence, the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 3) Rules 2020 are also amended to align the coming into force of some provisions with the new end date of the extended stay.

The rules, which come into force on Saturday 22 August, extend the existing stay for four weeks, to 20 September 2020, with the intention of avoiding any gap in the operation of the stay on possession proceedings and providing for a short extension to allow time for final preparations and procedural arrangements to be made for the resumption of possession cases in the courts, with a view to ensuring that the civil justice system is accessible, fair and efficient.

The enabling Statutory Instrument will be published via the Legislation website (external link, opens in a new tab). The on-line rules/website will then be updated accordingly.

The related PD amendments are contained in the 124th Practice Direction Update which the Master of the Rolls and the Lord Chancellor have both signed. A copy of the PD Update is available below.