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5 November, 2021 Open access

Master of the Rolls confirms the informal ‘Overall Arrangements for Possession Proceedings’ guidance introduced on the resumption of possession cases in England and Wales in September 2020 has ended

Proedures to follow for the future are 'properly contained in the Rules and Practice Directions or listing policies which are a matter for Designated Civil Judges to decide in the light of local conditions'

The Master of the Rolls, Sir Geoffrey Vos, has confirmed that the informal Overall Arrangements for Possession Proceedings guidance has ended on 1 November 2021 and should no longer be followed.

Introduced after the stay on possession claims during the Covid-19 pandemic came to an end on 20 September 2020, the 'Overall Arrnagements' guidance was produced to address the challenges and pressures faced by the courts by providing guidance on the conduct of future proceedings.

In particular, the guidance aimed to (i) help the parties, (ii) identify additional solutions, and (iii) enable efficient court processes and hearings, by measures including -

Confirming that these ‘Overall Arrangement’ came to an end on 1 November 2021, Sir Geoffrey said that -

‘The procedures to be followed for the future are those set out in Rules and Practice Directions. The informal guidance published in the “Overall Arrangements” document should no longer be viewed as governing or guiding court procedures, which are properly contained in Rules and Practice Directions or listing policies which are a matter for Designated Civil Judges to decide in the light of local conditions.’

For more information, see Statement from the Master of the Rolls: the end of the ‘overall arrangements for possession proceedings’ from judiciary.uk