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Your views on video hearings are needed

16 October 2018

As part of the court modernisation programme, HMCTS are conducting research on video hearings and the legal professional user experience of the service. We want to ensure they test across a wide range of hearing types and jurisdictions.

The Law Society’s policy for the court modernisation programme is that technology should not be implemented unless it has been tested, evaluated and proven to work.

While the use of video hearings can potentially be convenient for all parties involved, we do have some concerns such as the lack of evidence that they will ensure justice outcomes are fairer and questions over both the reliability of the technology and the efficiency of the administrative processes that will be built around it.

These research sessions provide a real opportunity for our members to advise HMCTS of their views on video hearings, ensuring they work for them and that they do not impact on access to justice.

HMCTS would like to interview a range of legal professionals to test their digital designs in order to learn about:

  • what the experience of getting ready for a video hearing, prior to the day, needs to be
  • what the on-the-day video hearing experience needs to be for legal professionals
  • what legal professionals need of the service that supports video hearings
  • what currently works in the designs
  • what doesn’t work
  • how the process can be improved
    Preferred participants include:
  • solicitors from small/medium/large firms
  • across geographical diverse locations in England and Wales
  • from a range of jurisdictions and organisations including civil, family and tribunal within commercial, public sector and third sector organisations
  • range of levels including partners, associates, trainees and paralegals who are involved in the preparations for hearings
  • admin staff who are involved in the preparations for hearings
  • support needs users, eg users with sights needs, users who lack confidence in using digital services or users who have special accessibility requirements

The research sessions will be face to face (unless another method is preferred), HMCTS will come to the participant/s and will take no longer than an hour.

The benefits of taking part in this research include having your say in the design of the services HMCTS are developing and stating what would work best for you.

If you are interested in taking part, please contact the lead researcher kevin.mchale@hmcts.net who will provide further information about the process.

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