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[Link] Courts, Contracts & Coronavirus

Sidharth Chopra and I write about what dispute resolution could look like in a post-pandemic world, and what we now need to be looking at as we deal with contracts, interpreting existing ones and drafting new ones...

So much that we've built up over the years now seems less than infallible. We will likely have to go back to the drawing board and work towards substantially renovating the legal structures and mechanisms we've developed over the years. Thankfully, though, the fundamentals of the law which we take for granted have remained stable.

Some countries are preparing for recessions of a kind not seen in our lifetimes, and we can be reasonably sure that the way we work will change. With the opportunity to cut operational costs by taking advantage of technological advances, and the precariousness of just-in-time supply chains becoming obvious, there will almost certainly be changes in both manufacturing and services sectors. The latter is also likely to spill into governance and the judiciary once digitised systems to support work are put into place. [....] Although no-one knows what a post-pandemic world will look like, questions regarding jurisdiction of courts to determine rights and liabilities of parties would probably arise more frequently. [....] In the short term, the problems which could crop up whilst determining dispute resolution mechanisms can be ameliorated with well-drafted contracts that anticipate potential issues and respond to them. In the long-term, however, the only way forward is to create processes to untangle the jurisdictional conundrum on a multilateral international basis.

Published at Medianama on 20 April 2020 and at Bar and Bench on 01 May 2020.

(This post is by Nandita Saikia and was first published at IN Content Law.)