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The role of the judge in civil litigation in the 19th century: Case-management avant la lettre in Geneva, The Netherlands and Belgium

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The present article discusses the powers of the judge in civil litigation in three jurisdictions that have been influenced by the French Code of Civil Procedure (1806). It shows that in the 19th century these jurisdictions adopted French law but at the same time tried to reduce party autonomy by increasing the judge's directive powers. This approach was most successful in Geneva. In The Netherlands, changes in the judge's position were less pronounced, whereas a 19th century Belgian draft code, which contained a number of measures that would have increased the judge's case-management powers, was not adopted in practice.


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