Good practice in complex criminal cases – High Court Protocol

The High Court Practice Note and Protocol [issued May 2018] applies to cases which are:

  • Likely to last eight weeks or longer.
  • Estimated to last more than four weeks and which are likely to benefit from the measures.

The Protocol is designed to ensure:

  • That the length of trials of complex crimes or trials involving multiple accused is controlled within reasonable limits.
  • Public resources are being properly utilised.
  • The jury is able to retain and assess the evidence it has heard.

The Protocol summarises good practice that can help reduce the length of trials relating to complex crimes or involving multiple accused.  The best handling technique has been determined to be continuous management by an experienced judge, who can try to ensure that trials be kept within manageable limits.

It is deemed that in most cases three months should be the target upper limit, and intensive case management may be needed to ensure this outcome.

In this section

High cost cases

Criminal cases subject to special arrangements

Find out how we identify high cost or complex cases and the typical cost of these.

High cost cases

How we assist you in high cost/complex cases

Learn about how we will appoint a dedicated contact for you in high cost/complex cases and the support they can provide.

High cost cases

Our role in identifying and avoiding duplication of work across high cost cases

Learn how we seek to prevent duplication of work and reduce costs in cases involving several parties.