In the News

NYC Bar Urges New Approaches to Streamline Civil Litigation (New York Law Journal)

New York Law Journal, June 27, 2018

NYC Bar Urges New Approaches to Streamline Civil Litigation

“Lawyers in civil cases, even adversaries, can usually agree on at least one thing: Litigation tends to be lengthy and expensive. Their clients may also share that opinion, and they are stuck with the costs. Members of the New York City Bar Association said in a report released on Wednesday that’s not just something to complain about: It’s undermining the fair administration of justice in New York, as those who do not have deep enough pockets to litigate a case to the bitter end may be forced to live with unfavorable results. But not all hope is lost, the City Bar asserted in the report. Courts, attorneys and litigants can all take steps to prevent civil cases from becoming pricey boondoggles, such as evaluating disputes on the merits early in the process, even before a complaint is filed; and supporting—or, in some cases, mandating—mediation to resolve cases. ‘Parties also often settle disputes, without the benefit of any judicial input on the merits, only after expenditures of substantial legal costs that could more productively have been spent on bridging gaps and achieving earlier negotiated resolutions,’ said John Kiernan, a partner at Debevoise & Plimpton and the immediate past president of the City Bar, who last year convened a committee to study how disputes could be resolved more efficiently. ‘These inefficiencies contribute to overburdened court dockets and client dissatisfaction with the dispute resolution process.'”

Read more.