Martin Partington: Spotlight on the Justice System

Keeping the English Legal System under review

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Where do we need to go with research in administrative justice?

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Source: Where do we need to go with research in administrative justice?

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Written by lwtmp

September 18, 2017 at 9:57 am

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Using UKAJI’s website as a research resource

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Written by lwtmp

March 31, 2017 at 10:24 am

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Administrative justice oversight must continue

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Written by lwtmp

March 15, 2017 at 10:25 am

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A Design Problem for Judicial Review: What we know and what we need to know about immigration judicial reviews

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Written by lwtmp

March 15, 2017 at 10:23 am

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Setting time limits to police bail

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In recent years there has been much complaint about the shadow can be cast over people’s lives when those people have become of interest to the police, but where the police do not have enough evidence to justify charging them with the committal of an offence. A number of well-known members of the public were on police bail for months, not knowing whether any further steps were going to be taken against them.

When she was Home Secretary, Theresa May decided that there had to be limits to the time any person could be made subject to police bail (technically known as ‘pre-charge bail’).

Part 4 of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 contains provisions which reflect this decision.

The Act amends PACE Act 1984 by creating a presumption that where the police decide to release a person without charging them, the release should not be subject to the imposition of bail, unless defined pre-conditions are satisfied.

The conditions are

  • Condition A is that there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the person on bail is guilty of the offence for which they were arrested and are on bail.
  • Condition B is that there are reasonable grounds for believing either that further time is needed for the police to make a charging decision under police-led prosecution arrangements (where the person has been bailed for that purpose) or that further investigation is necessary.
  • Condition C is that there are reasonable grounds for believing that the charging decision or investigation (as applicable) is being conducted diligently and expeditiously.
  • Condition D is that releasing the person on bail continues to be both necessary
    and proportionate in all the circumstances of the particular case (having regard, in particular,to any bail conditions that are or would be imposed).

Where the bail pre-conditions are satisfied, the period of bail will normally by limited to 28 days (3 months in Serious Fraud Office cases) though the period may be extended to three months by senior police officers, with the possibility of further extensions approved by the magistrates.

Further information is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/policing-and-crime-bill

Written by lwtmp

February 24, 2017 at 12:34 pm

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Whatever happened to the idea for a Public Services Ombudsman?

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Following a report by Robert Gordon in 2014, the Government announced in its legislative programme for 2015 that it would be published a draft bill, proposing the creation of a single Public Services Ombudsman, which would bring together the current Parliamentary ombudsman, Local Government Ombudsmen and the Health Services Ombudsman. Such a move had been made in Scotland and Wales.

No such bill has been published, nor was the proposal mentioned in the legislative programme for 2016. The Government has stated that the proposal will be brought forward in due course, but there is no indication of any timetable for this.

In the interim, a very interesting House of Commons Briefing Paper on the subject has been published which summarises many of the issues involved.

Rationalisation of the current plethora of Ombudsmen has been something that has been argued for sometime but one gets the impression that for the moment it has been kicked into the long grass and is not high on the Government’s priority list.

The Briefing note is at http://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/CBP-7587

Written by lwtmp

November 6, 2016 at 10:43 am

Court closures: the details

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In July 2015, the Government launched a consultation on closing under used courts. 91 possible buildings were earmarked for possible closure. (See this blog 26 July 2015)

We know that reduction of the court estate is a key component needed to fund the investment needed to modernise the court estate. (See this blog 3o Nov 2015).

The Government has now announced the buildings that are to be closed – together with an indicative timetable showing that the closure programme will run over 2 years.

In the end only 64 of the sites originally identified will close as proposed. A further 22 closures will take place, but modified from the original proposals. 5 escape the axe altogether.

The details can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/proposal-on-the-provision-of-court-and-tribunal-estate-in-england-and-wales

Written by lwtmp

February 19, 2016 at 4:56 pm