- 14 Jul 2022
- 2 min read
Rise in Technology and Construction Court Cases
The Technology and Construction Court has seen an increasing number of disputes requiring technical input or complex IT and renewable energy disputes, Maxine Nutting explains.
What is the Technology and Construction Court?
The Technology and Construction Court is a specialist division of the High Court dealing with high value and complex disputes relating to technology, construction, IT, engineering, renewable energy, and adjudication/arbitration enforcement.
The court has recently released its annual report for the period 1 October 2020 to September 2021, which provides an interesting insight into the current, post-covid litigation landscape.
What does the annual report of the Technology and Construction Court say?
The court has seen an increase in the number of disputes which need technical input or which it is appropriate for the Court to deal with because of its experience in the type of dispute, including complex computer and IT infrastructure disputes and renewable energy disputes.
Overall there was a notable 7% increase in claims brought compared with the previous year, which is a total increase of 16% since the 2018-2019 period. This suggests a growing trend in businesses being willing to commit to robust court action to protect their rights. With financial pressures in the economy growing, it seems likely more and more businesses will seek to take substantial action to recover debts owed.
Unsurprisingly, the court notes that in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower fire, there has been “a steady increase in cases concerning flammable cladding and other materials, together with more general fire protection issues”. This mirrors our firm’s experience, and we have recently settled a Technology and Construction case relating to supply of unsuitable fireboards, in a developer client’s favour. Manufacturer and product suppliers will need to stay ever alert of the due diligence procedures they have in place to ensure their products are of a satisfactory quality and compliant with all applicable regulations.
Overall, whilst no party wants to be forced in litigation, litigants can be assured that if they choose to pursue this route, the Technology and Construction Court remains excellently placed to deal with such claims. The annual report notes that the majority of cases (62%) resolve before trial, influenced by the court’s strong case management, and those that do proceed to trial typically get there within 12-18 months from date of issue.
Trethowans have substantial experience across Technology and Construction Court matters, and are available to assist with any queries relating to this. Should you wish to discuss a matter, please contact Maxine Nutting or another member of the Commercial Litigation Team on 0800 2800 421 or get in touch here.