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The UK Supreme Court and CoVid-19

How has the UK Supreme Court adapted in response to the pandemic?
© Crown copyright 2020

We have seen earlier this week how first instance courts have adapted to the challenges of the Coronavirus pandemic. This step briefly looks at how the UK Supreme Court has adapted, with this extract from the 2019-20 Annual Report.

A screen capture from the UKSC Annual Report, with three pictures of screen captures from video hearings for the Supreme Court during 2020

The text in the infographic is reproduced below.

“As a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Court had to cease sittings within the building and move to a system where all justices and staff worked remotely. The Court also had to find a way to hold hearings and hand down judgments when all participants, justices and counsel, were in remote locations

To do this the IT team set up a system based on the Cisco Webex video conferencing platform. This enabled the Court to successfully continue to carry out its core function of hearing cases.

This required the relevant software to be installed on justices’ laptops and that simple, clear guidance be drawn up for both justices and counsel.

Working with our broadcasting contractor we ensured that cases could continue to be recorded and streamed via our websites.

The IT team also developed a facility to allow parties to submit forms and papers electronically.

All of this was achieved in a very short timeframe.”

© Crown copyright 2020
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