Following the widespread outbreak of Covid-19, more than one hundred countries had instituted either a full or partial lockdown by the end of March 2020, which subsequently forced most hearings and tribunals to be held remotely.
To better understand the experiences of lawyers, arbitrators and testifying experts around the world, as well as consider the possible psychological impact of different “hearing” environments, interviews were conducted with BRG testifying experts and the external contributors.
As those interviewed demonstrate, the experience of remote hearings and tribunals has been largely positive and, in many cases, has exceeded expectations. At the same time, people involved in such hearings acknowledge the psychological impact of conducting proceedings remotely. The degree to which this has affected the outcome varies, although the overall consensus suggests it has not been strong enough to alter the expected results.
It is widely accepted that virtual hearings and tribunals are here to stay in some form. However, it’s unlikely universal standards will be implemented.