Main Features of Woolf

1. The three track system:

Small claims track for cases worth up to £5,000 (£1,000 for personal injury cases)
Fast Track for cases worth £5,000 - £15,000
Multi-Track for cases over £15,000 or complex cases

2. The Civil Procedure Rules aimed at simplifying procedure with a single set of rules covering the High Court and county court, for example, by having one method of starting a case (a Claim Form).

3. Encouraging the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). For example, judges can stay proceedings to allow the parties to try ADR.

4. Tight timetables for cases. For example, fast track cases are to be heard within 30 weeks of allocation.

5. Judicial case management with judges taking more control over the conduct of cases, by giving directions, setting a timetable and deciding preliminary issues at a case management conference/pre-trial review.

6. The move away from an adversarial style of case handling.

7. Proportionality in dealing with cases (see the Overriding Objective in the CPR).

8. The use of information technology.

9. Claimants are now able to make offers to settle (as well as the defendant).