Courts and Tribunals (Online Procedure) Bill [Lords]

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:51 pm on 16th July 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice 2:51 pm, 16th July 2019

I thank the hon. Gentleman for that point, which is rather separate from the Bill; this is an enabling measure to ensure that a procedure committee can be formed. However, I hear his point. We have no current plans to close further courthouses. We monitor their usage carefully. He will recall our previous debate about the “Fit for the future” consultation, setting out the considerations that will be brought to bear when looking at the use of our future estate, and I hope my answer to that debate will inform him.

The Bill will create an online procedure rule committee, which will be responsible for making online procedure rules for specified proceedings across the civil, family and tribunals jurisdictions. The committee will operate with the same powers as existing rule committees. We want to ensure that our online services and systems and the rules that underpin them are easily accessible and navigable routes for people to bring cases to court. To ensure that we build on and complement the digital working already in place, we intend to take a gradual approach to the implementation of these new online rules.