Re Disclosure of Documents: The Defendants solicitor did not ask for any documents at the time of disclosure 6 months ago(building dispute). Now, just before the building expert is to carry out his inspection D has come up with a list of doc's he would would like to be disclosed. I am concerned that D might contact workmen who have carried out work on my property or that experts report could be influenced adversely if he knew beforehand that x amount of money was paid to rectify a particular building defect on which he is required to comment. The documents are not in my possession and will need time consuming searches at this stage. Can I refuse disclosing documents until the expert has carried out his inspection and compiled his report in 2weeks time? Some information is privileged , does all information need to be disclosed , we are now 6 months after disclosure lists were provided. Thank you
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What track is the matter allocated to?
It is a 2 day trial, Multitrack . Hearing will take place sometime next year,(Mediation could take place after the experts report after he confirms he comments on builder work and cost of rectifying it.)
Has the Court ordered disclosure yet?
yes disclosure was ordered several months ago, D's didn't ask for anything to be disclosed at that time.
Now the expert has been instructed by the court and he is supposed to inspect in 2weeks.
D is now asking me to provide name of workmen who rectified work and receipts for carrying out this work.
Expert is supposed to comment on the cost of rectifying the damage .I think defendants want to send this info to expert before inspection which could unduly influence him (not sure which way). D has been sending all sorts of information to the expert which is not part of directions order or list.
Ok - have you submitted your list of documents for disclosure?
yes-a long time ago.
I don't mind disclosing these to the D's , the timing just doesn't seem right. D is know to contact the expert without my knowledge, I just wish to ensure I am not tactically disadvantaged due to this . The expert needs to make his assessment of costs and damages independently -court hasn't ordered for this info to be disclosed to the expert.
Well you have an ongoing duty of disclosure. So you must disclose documents:
31.6 Standard disclosure requires a party to disclose only–
(a) the documents on which he relies; and
(b) the documents which –
(i) adversely affect his own case;
(ii) adversely affect another party’s case; or
(iii) support another party’s case; and
(c) the documents which he is required to disclose by a relevant practice direction.
They must also do the same. They cant disclose them to the expert, but you must disclose the documents to them
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Can I disclose these after 2 weeks so the D's don't send documents to the expert to adversely influence him as they are not part of joint instructions, expert is required to make his independent assessment
You can give a specific instruction not to disclose, if they do then you can make an application to Court, re their conduct
Does that clarify?
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Good luck! Thanks