The age of remote access to justice
There is no question that remote hearings in the Bermuda courts are a good means of ensuring the continued delivery of justice during these unprecedented times. Even though swift and huge progress has and will continue to be made in improving remote hearings, it is becoming more and more clear that we will need to work together under the effects of Covid-19 for many months to come to ensure the delivery of justice continues.
Remote courts are conducted at the cost of the parties’ ability to properly connect to one another, and judges are likely to be compromised in their ability to conduct hearings with empathy, fairness, understanding and compassion — all rightly valued as essential elements of the success of the court system.
I appreciate that to deliver justice in the time of Covid-19, we must accept compromise, but there is a concern about the impact on parties and the wider goal of delivering justice fairly.