Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1659968
 


 



Victorian Reform of Civil Litigation in the Superior Courts of Common Law


Thomas P. Gallanis


University of Iowa - College of Law

August 27, 2010

WITHIN A REASONABLE TIME: THE HISTORY OF DUE AND UNDUE DELAY IN CIVIL LITIGATION, C.H. van Rhee, ed., Duncker & Humblot, 2010
U Iowa Legal Studies Research Paper No. 11-01

Abstract:     
The “delay, vexation, and expense” of English civil procedure attracted considerable criticism at the beginning of the nineteenth century, most notably from Jeremy Bentham and his ardent supporter in Parliament, Henry Brougham. Brougham’s marathon speech in 1828 attacked the “double tax of cost and delay” and urged a series of sweeping reforms. Reform would come piecemeal throughout the century, culminating in transformative statutes enacted after Brougham and Bentham had died. Holdsworth accurately labeled the Victorian period the “age of reform” in procedure as in so many other areas of the law. This essay examines the Victorian era’s responses to undue delay in English civil litigation in the superior courts of common law. The immediate verdict on the reforms was overwhelmingly positive, but with the benefit of hindsight the appraisal is more modest. Indeed, it remains to be seen whether the High Court judges of the twenty-first century will be more successful than their Victorian counterparts in combating undue delay.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 24

Keywords: civil procedure, English law, legal history

JEL Classification: K40, K41

Accepted Paper Series


Download This Paper

Date posted: August 17, 2010 ; Last revised: January 30, 2011

Suggested Citation

Gallanis, Thomas P., Victorian Reform of Civil Litigation in the Superior Courts of Common Law (August 27, 2010). WITHIN A REASONABLE TIME: THE HISTORY OF DUE AND UNDUE DELAY IN CIVIL LITIGATION, C.H. van Rhee, ed., Duncker & Humblot, 2010; U Iowa Legal Studies Research Paper No. 11-01. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1659968

Contact Information

Thomas P. Gallanis (Contact Author)
University of Iowa - College of Law ( email )
Melrose and Byington
Iowa City, IA 52242
United States
Feedback to SSRN


Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 419
Downloads: 71
Download Rank: 187,417

© 2014 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo1 in 0.406 seconds