UCL Faculty of Laws


The case for online courts

16 February 2017, 5:30 pm–7:00 pm

Keyboard and Gavel

Event Information

Open to



UCL Judicial Institute


UCL Darwin LT (Darwin Building, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT)

UCL Judicial Institute Lecture and Panel Discussion


Professor Dame Hazel Genn DBE, QC (Hon) (Dean, UCL Faculty of Laws and Co-Director of the UCL Judicial Institute)


Professor Richard Susskind OBE (President of the Society for Computers and Law and IT Adviser to the Lord Chief Justice)


The Rt Honourable Sir Ernest Ryder (Senior President of Tribunals)
Robert Bourns (President of the Law Society)
Susan Acland-Hood (Chief Executive of HM Courts and Tribunals Service)
Andrew Langdon QC (Chairman of the Bar)

About the talk

The concept of online courts was introduced in England and Wales in February 2015 by an advisory group of the Civil Justice Council. Although now strongly supported by the government and senior judiciary, it is a controversial development. Prominent representatives of the legal profession and advice sector have expressed doubts about the viability and suitability of online dispute resolution (ODR) and its potential impact on access to justice and the ‘digitally excluded’.

In this lecture, Professor Richard Susskind, who chaired the original advisory group, will provide a practical and theoretical introduction to online courts, making the case for fundamental change in the way the courts handle low value civil, family and tribunal disputes. The lecture will be followed by a panel discussion of the issues and contributions will be invited from the audience.

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