Lunchtime Meeting: After the Robots: how strong is ‘without prejudice’ protection?

Speaker: Kathryn Pickard, Barrister, 11 South Square Chambers

Venue: Freshfield Bruckhaus Deringer, 100 Bishopsgate, London EC2P 2SR

The public policy in promoting settlement provides a strong rationale for protecting ‘without prejudice’ communications. But the protection is not absolute. The ‘without prejudice’ label must be used with care, especially in multi-jurisdictional disputes. The focus of this talk will be the Court of Appeal’s decision in AutoStore v Ocado [2022] 1 WLR 561, in which an application for interim injunctive relief to restrain use of information arising from ‘without prejudice’ discussions before the US International Trade Commission was refused. The degree of protection provided by the ‘without prejudice’ rule will be considered, together with exceptions to the rule and steps that can be taken to protect information disclosed during ‘without prejudice’ discussions from use in subsequent court proceedings.

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