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- On completion of this course you will:
- • Have a firm understanding of what the legal test of bias is and how it is applied by Judges
- • Be able to identify the key attributes of the ‘fair minded and informed observer
- • Understand how and when complaints of bias should be raised in civil proceedings
- • Be aware of the general rule that applies when a Judge has business ties to the same chambers as a barrister in the case and appreciate the circumstances in which such a connection may give rise to a complaint of bias
- • Have the skills and ability required to quickly and efficiently evaluate merits of applications and appeals
- • Appreciate the importance of judicial transparency regarding their associations and conflicts of interest
- • Be aware of the diversity of judicial opinion on when Judges may cross the line into acting partially in any given case
What is the target audience?
- Civil practitioners of all levels
This 3-part session will provide a guide to the legal test of bias, including how Judges apply the test and how practitioners can raise a complaint of bias in civil proceedings.
Consideration will be given to the courses of action available when a Judge has business ties to the same chambers as a barrister in the case. In addition, the key points of practice in recent case law will be discussed and will provide a practical illustration of unconscious bias principle.
Part 1: What it Means and How to Raise it
During this session, barrister Ben Amunwa will explain the classic legal test for bias and will depict the key characteristics of how Judges have applied the test in practice, with reference to recent case law.
Consideration will be given to the procedures for raising complaints of bias (during a hearing and / or on appeal) and Ben will provide viewers with advice on how best to raise complaints of bias in an application for recusal or an application for permission to appeal.
Part 2: Professional Connections Between Judges and Barristers
Through the examination of a recent key case in this area, Ben will explore the duty of legal advisers to disclose information to their opponents’ regarding their professional business ties or associations with Judges. The need for this do be done in a proactive and timely manner will also be discussed.
Ben will provide viewers with guidance on how and when a bias challenge may succeed on the basis of professional connections between a Judge and a barrister in the case and will discuss some of the scenarios you should be alert to in practice.
Part 3: Practical Tips and Recent Developments
During this session viewers will gain an understanding of how the Court of Appeal assesses allegations bias.
Consideration will be given to a recent application of the bias test in an international commercial dispute and will highlight the importance of a fair hearing before an independent Tribunal. Viewers will be encouraged to advise clients on the importance of taking an objective approach that is supported by contemporary evidence. Viewers will also receive guidance on how to identify and evaluate the merits of such allegations and what evidence may be required
This session will assist practitioners develop a wider toolkit for advising clients on their likelihood of success on these difficult applications. Ben will also direct viewers to where they can find recent practical tips on allegations of bias, with wide application in civil litigation.
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