Civil Justice Reform
An Ombudsman Perspective
Ombudsman schemes have been viewed with interest for their efficiency, speed, cost and use of technology. As Sir Geoffrey Vos seeks to integrate alternative dispute resolution as part of a civil justice funnel, it is important to recognize that ombudsman schemes fulfil different functions than the courts. This paper suggests that dispute resolution is only one of the functions of a civil justice system. Court efficiency should not be the predominant organizing principle. Recognizing the variety of functions and legitimate interests contained within the civil justice system rather than conceiving a hierarchical structure presided over by courts could offer an outcome-based perspective on reform.
Keywords: ombudsman; dispute resolution; technology; justice systems; prevention.
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