Patrick O’Brien: How active were pre-2009 judges as parliamentarians? – UK Constitutional Law Association

Posted October 28th, 2014 in constitutional reform, judges, judiciary, news, parliament by sally

‘Is the question of anything more than historical interest? The Constitutional Reform Act 2005 precluded judicial peers from contributing to parliamentary debate from 1 October 2009. Many of the Law Lords were opposed to the change, and many judges are at least nostalgic for the past arrangements. The current Lord Chief Justice (LCJ) of England and Wales, Lord Thomas, and his immediate predecessor, Lord Judge, have both publicly regretted the fact that they cannot speak in Parliament on matters of importance to the judiciary. To the extent that the outlook of judges today is shaped partly by the feeling that they have lost a valuable platform, the issue is worth exploring. In fact judges were very infrequent contributors to parliamentary debate. Whilst past Lord Chief Justices – and other judicial peers – may have occasionally used the chamber of the Lords as a platform for articulating judicial viewpoints, all things considered they did so rarely.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 28th October 2014

Source: www.ukconstitutionallaw.org

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Lord Chancellor should be “very senior lawyer” – Legal Futures

Posted October 17th, 2014 in barristers, judiciary, lord chancellor, news, parliament, rule of law by tracey

‘The Lord Chancellor should be a “very senior lawyer”, Nicholas Lavender QC, chairman of the Bar Council, has said. Justice secretary Chris Grayling told the House of Lords constitution committee this week that there were “no disadvantages” to the Lord Chancellor being, like him, a non-lawyer.’

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Legal Futures, 17th October 2014

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

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Bar Council Statement on the role of the Lord Chancellor – The Bar Council

Posted October 17th, 2014 in barristers, inquiries, judiciary, lord chancellor, parliament, press releases by tracey

‘Following the Lord Chancellor’s evidence on October 15 2014 to the House of Lords
Constitution Committee’s inquiry into the role of the Lord Chancellor, Nicholas Lavender QC, chairman of the Bar Council, said: “Justice is not a service that governments can choose to provide or not. It is a vital part of our constitutional arrangements. It needs to be defended and promoted to make the separation of powers a continuing reality and thereby to safeguard our democratic way of life for the future.” ‘

Full press release

The Bar Council, 16th October 2014

Source: www.barcouncil.org.uk

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Women make up only 25% of judges in England and Wales – The Guardian

Posted October 10th, 2014 in diversity, equality, judiciary, news, reports, women by sally

‘The UK judicial system lags well behind the rest of Europe in terms of gender balance, according to a study of the relative efficiency of justice systems published on Thursday.’

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The Guardian, 9th October 2014

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Courts should not be given free rein to create new defences against trade mark infringement – OUT-LAW.com

Posted October 7th, 2014 in courts, defences, EC law, intellectual property, judiciary, news, trade unions by sally

‘Proposals by academics to allow new defences against trade mark infringement to be created in the future should be resisted, a trade mark law specialist has warned.’

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OUT-LAW.com, 6th October 2014

Source: www.out-law.com

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Master Gordon-Saker condemns lack of costs training for judges – Litigation Futures

Posted October 2nd, 2014 in budgets, continuing professional development, costs, judges, judiciary, news, speeches by tracey

‘Master Gordon-Saker, who replaced Peter Hurst as Senior Costs Judge yesterday, has used his first public speech in the role to launch a strongly-worded attack on the lack of training for judges in costs budgeting.’

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Litigation Futures, 2nd October 2014

Source: www.litigationfutures.com

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Fee-paid Judicial Pension Scheme – Ministry of Justice

Posted September 22nd, 2014 in consultations, fees, judiciary, news, pensions by sally

‘This consultation seeks views on the proposed design of the Fee-paid Judicial Pension Scheme (FPJPS).’

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Ministry of Justice, 19th September 2014

Source: https://consult.justice.gov.uk

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Judiciary needs fast-track scheme to boost diversity, says top judge – The Guardian

Posted September 18th, 2014 in diversity, judges, judiciary, law firms, litigants in person, news by tracey

‘A career judiciary with fast-track promotion to higher courts may be required to overcome lack of diversity on the bench, the UK’s most senior judge has suggested.’

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The Guardian, 17th September 2014

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Lord Chancellors should be judges, APIL argues – Legal Futures

‘Lord Chancellors should be recruited from the judiciary and no longer combine the role with that of justice secretary, the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) has argued.’

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Legal Futures, 29th August 2014

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

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Changing legal education – OUP Blog

‘Martin Partington discussed a range of careers in his podcasts yesterday. Today [20 August], he tackles how new legal issues and developments in the professional environment have in turn changed organizational structures, rules and regulations, and aspects of legal education.’

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OUP Blog, 20th August 2014

Source: www.blog.oup.com

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Judges could hear information rights tribunal cases on their own – OUT-LAW.com

‘Judges could determine the outcome of some information rights tribunal cases on their own in future under just-published proposals.’

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OUT-LAW.com, 19th August 2014

Source: www.out-law.com

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Graham Gee: Do Lord Chancellors defend judicial independence? – UK Constitutional Law Association

Posted August 18th, 2014 in inquiries, judiciary, lord chancellor, news, parliament, pensions, statutory duty by tracey

‘As part of its inquiry into the office of Lord Chancellor, the Constitution Committee asks whether “new” (i.e. post-2003) Lord Chancellors have actually defended judicial independence in line with their customary and now statutory duty to do so. I was asked for examples earlier this summer when appearing before the Committee (with Andrew Le Sueur and Patrick O’Brien). I tried to identify some, but rather garbled my answer. Earlier in the year I also sketched some thoughts about Lord Chancellors in Public Law, but struggled to find clear-cut examples. One reason is that collective cabinet responsibility and the confidentiality of exchanges between Lord Chancellors and judges mean that outsiders will seldom have a full picture of what has occurred behind closed doors. This is unfortunate since my impression is that many lawyers assume—mistakenly, I think—that new Lord Chancellors are neither willing nor able to defend judicial independence. This post is hopefully third time lucky in correcting this assumption. By drawing on press reports, public statements and interviews that Robert Hazell, Kate Malleson, Patrick O’Brien and I conducted between 2011-2013, I want to piece together evidence that suggests that new Lord Chancellors can and do defend judicial independence.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 18th August 2014

Source: www.ukconstitutionallaw.org/blog

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Information Tribunal Consultation – Panopticon

Posted August 18th, 2014 in consultations, judiciary, news, tribunals by tracey

‘The Senior President of Tribunals, Sullivan LJ, has launched a consultation paper on altering the composition of the First-tier Tribunal (General Regulatory Chamber) in some Information Rights cases. With the support of GRC Chamber President, Judge Warren, it is proposed to remove the requirement that a judge sit with two non-legal members and allow the Chamber President flexibility to direct that certain cases be heard by a judge alone.’

Full story

Panopticon, 18th August 2014

Source: www.panopticonblog.com

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The role of judges in human rights jurisprudence: a comparison of the Australian and UK experience – Speech by Lord Neuberger

Posted August 12th, 2014 in human rights, judges, judiciary, news, speeches by sally

The role of judges in human rights jurisprudence: a comparison of the Australian and UK experience (PDF)

Lord Neuberger

Supreme Court of Victoria, Melbourne, 8th August 2014

Source: www.supremecourt.uk

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Judges ‘too ready’ to follow Strasbourg rulings, says Lord Neuberger – Daily Telegraph

Posted August 12th, 2014 in courts, judges, judiciary, news, speeches by sally

‘President of the Supreme Court admits ‘we should be more ready not to follow’ European Court of Human Rights.’

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Daily Telegraph, 11th August 2014

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

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Legal aid cuts have left family courts ‘at breaking point’ – The Guardian

‘The family courts system is at breaking point due to delays caused by unrepresented litigants and overstretched judges, according to the body that represents lawyers and professionals in divorce hearings.’

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The Guardian, 29th July 2014

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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More women judges will improve law': Britain’s only female Supreme Court judge calls for more diversity – The Independent

Posted July 28th, 2014 in diversity, judiciary, legal profession, news, statistics, Supreme Court, women by sally

‘Britain’s only female Supreme Court judge says there needs to be more gender equality shown across Britain’s legal system and that by appointing more female judges the quality of justice could be greatly improved.’

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The Independent, 27th July 2014

Source: www.independent.co.uk

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Lord Chief Justice speech: Dinner for Her Majesty’s Judges – CrimeLine

Posted July 15th, 2014 in judges, judiciary, speeches by tracey

‘Lord Chief Justice speech: Dinner for Her Majesty’s Judges, 9th July.’

Full speech

CrimeLine, 14th July 2014

Source: www.crimeline.info

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Scales of justice still unbalanced for female judges – The Guardian

Posted July 11th, 2014 in child abuse, diversity, equality, inquiries, judges, judiciary, news, women by sally

‘The lord chief justice admitted progress on diversity is too slow, while Chris Grayling’s offer of ‘partnership’ should be eyed warily.’

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The Guardian, 10th July 2014

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Serious procedural faults in the appointment of judges: an urgent matter of public interest – Halsbury’s Law Exchange

Posted July 9th, 2014 in judiciary, news, professional conduct, public interest by sally

‘As part of the current debate on identifying the best values of British culture and society, the proper workings of the British legal system, would surely have to occupy a prominent place. After all, it is the judiciary that would enhance the sense of wellbeing of its citizen every time that justice is felt to have been established.’

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Halsbury’s Law Exchange, 9th July 2014

Source: www.halsburyslawexchange.co.uk

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