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Practice area Procedural law

Our procedural law team is specialised in litigating and assisting with lawsuits across the entire spectrum of civil law. We litigate in courts of all instances, with an emphasis on appeals and cassation. You can turn to us for every form of litigation assistance: from advice on appeal or cassation through to conducting the full proceedings or cassation proceedings.

Procedural law and appeals

In a lawsuit, a dispute takes on a new legal dimension: that of procedural law. While substantive law dictates your rights (and obligations), procedural law (or: formal law) provides for how you can realise those rights. In-depth knowledge of this procedural law is indispensable for successful litigation. Doctrines of procedural law such as the division of the obligation to furnish facts and the burden of proof and the formulation of a claim or amendment of claim often play a deciding role in the proceedings.

Our Cassation, procedural law and appeals team has that expertise in civil procedure. We are especially comfortable litigating before the Courts of Appeal and the Supreme Court. And that is a necessity. Lodging an appeal involves dealing with a deeper and even more complex layer of procedural law. In appeal, for instance, a number of more difficult doctrines of appellate procedure play a role, such as the grievance system, the devolutive effect and the two-statement rule. Our experience in litigating before the Courts of Appeal and the Supreme Court is valuable in lower courts as well because we are already able to get in lane for a possible appeal by selecting the right procedural strategy.


If a party to the proceedings is dissatisfied with the ruling of a Court of Appeal, entirely or in part, it can appeal to the Supreme Court. Once the proceedings have advanced to this point, the facts have been established. The Supreme Court only assesses whether the law has been correctly applied, whether the lower court has provided adequate reasons for its judgment and whether other essential formal requirements have been observed. This special character of the cassation proceedings makes litigating before the Supreme Court a profession in and of itself. You can find more information on cassation proceedings (and how they take place) here.

Our services

Are you involved in a legal dispute which will probably involve litigation? Do not hesitate to contact Tom van Malssen (+31 (0)24 381 31 35 or vanmalssen@dirkzwager.nl). You can turn to us for advice on appeals or cassation, for a quick scan of (the merits of) an appeal lodged by the other party or for conduct of the whole proceedings. We also advise lawyers seeking specific support in procedurally complex proceedings.