The goal – super fast courts

Challenges overview

Worldwide surveys show many countries face the same issues in Judiciary systems:

Increasing number of cases.

Judicial officers have to expedite the cases pending for the last several years as more and more cases are being filed with the increase in literacy rate.

Increasing costs of courts.

In some countries per capita spending on criminal justice — including federal and provincial jails, court costs and policing — has climbed up to 25 per cent over the last decade even though the crime rate fell significantly.

Too long lead time of cases.

If an administrative dispute takes took long, uncertainty about the outcome may lead to tension and frustration. The European Court for Human Rights is even of the opinion that compensation of immaterial damage should be possible in such cases.

Diminishing throughput of closed/finalised cases.

An unavoidable effect of excessive workload or lack of resources.

Necessity for change

All these challenges (or systematic problems) raise dissatisfaction of the public: dalayed justice is considered as denied justice. At the same time judges struggle with the lack of resources, complain about growing back-log of cases, face dissatisfaction of people because of relatively long processes and their breaks.

From the managerial point of view any case could be approached as a project while court could be approached as a multi-project environment. But they ussually aren’t as Judiciary system has conceptual difference from other complex systems:

  • procedures and protocols dictated by law and regulation,
  • judges are autonomous,
  • lack of managerial culture,
  • 50% of players act against the system.

It is obvious that the level of complexity of Judiciary system demands a different, much more advanced, managerial approach.

Solutions to be exposed during event

Speakers with a huge experience in improving court systems will share how they have addressed these issues to achieve incredible results.

  • They will expose Lean ways of working to reduce costs and streamline processes providing even better services for court users.
  • They will outline solutions that helped reduce lead time of cases by 47% while increase court throughput by 43%.
  • In adition to court level changes speakers will disclose solutions proven in the lowest unit (judge, assistant, secretary) level that can be implemented by any judge in any country to significantly improve the performance of a judge.
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Problems faced by courts world-wide

The Court’s caseload has increased steadily to a current total of more than 10,000 cases on the docket per Term. The increase has been rapid in recent years. In 1960, only 2,313 cases were on the docket, and in 1945, only 1,460.

Supreme Court of the United States, 2013.

The Philippine judiciary faces serious difficulties in addressing case backlogs as lower courts are congested with over a million cases every year, the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) revealed.

National Statistical Coordination Board of Philippines, 2013.

If no new court cases are filed, Malta will take eight years to finalise all present cases (…). If all cases were evenly divided among judges, magistrates and adjudicators, it would take three years to eliminate the backlog, but this was not possible because of varying expertise.

Report of the Malta parliamentary secretary for Justice, 2013.

The Presidents of the International Court of Justice and International Criminal Court told the General Assembly today they had made great progress in their work promoting the rule of law and confronting impunity, while Assembly delegates noted the growing complexity of their cases and increased workload, and pushed for the judicial bodies to receive more human and financial resources.

General Assembly of United Nations, 2010.

Trials in Canada have become a dangerous waiting game. “The courts are a cornerstone of our democracy and I see it starting to crumble because of delay,” said Rick Woodburn, a Nova Scotia Crown attorney who is president of the Canadian Association of Crown Counsels.

National Post, Canada, 2012.

He said in his decision that without more judicial resources, and more court space to deal with the “explosive growth” in the region, the situation is “leading to a breaking point.” The backlog is getting worse, despite colleagues working hard on weekends, evenings and over vacation time, he wrote. “The backlog is easy to fix, it’s just a matter of resources,” he said.

Statement of judge Justice Stephen Brown, Canada, 2012.

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