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Clause 2 — Protocol about the Law Commission's work

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:05 pm on 16th October 2009.

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Photo of Bridget Prentice Bridget Prentice Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Ministry of Justice 2:05 pm, 16th October 2009

I will certainly raise it with the Minister within whose portfolio the Law Commission sits, and I will ensure that either he or I write to hon. Members or put in the Library a response to the question that the hon. Gentleman rightly asks.

We see the Bill as a key mechanism for delivering higher implementation rates of Law Commission reports, which will benefit both law reform and the taxpayer. The requirement on the Lord Chancellor to report on the extent of implementation of Law Commission reports each year will keep up the pressure on us, the Government, to account for decisions on implementation. Of equal or perhaps more importance is the protocol that will set out best practice in terms of working relationships between the Law Commission and Departments on individual projects. That is what should assist in developing the collaborative relationship between the Law Commission and Departments that experience teaches us is the key to successful implementation.

Finally, I want to stress our commitment to the work of the Law Commission. The more effective the Law Commission is in having its reports on reform accepted and then implemented, the more successful it will be in achieving its overall objective of making the law fairer, more modern, simpler and as cost-effective as possible, which I believe the whole House would want to support. I am thus very pleased indeed to support the Bill. My hon. Friend the Member for Islington, South and Finsbury can go back to her constituency, having shown herself to be a true parliamentarian in taking through a private Member's Bill. That is not an easy thing to do and it does not happen very often. My hon. Friend has every reason to be proud of her achievements today.

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