Courts and Tribunals (Online Procedure) Bill [Lords]

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

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Photo of Bob Neill Bob Neill Chair, Justice Committee, Chair, Justice Committee 2:51 pm, 16th July 2019

I welcome the principle behind the Bill. In setting out the enabling nature of the measure, will the Minister bear in mind that there is an underlying principle, consistent with the Briggs report, which the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Burnett, made clear in giving evidence to the Justice Committee? It is that while professional users will be obliged to use the online procedure, it is not the intention that litigants in person will be. Lord Burnett’s evidence clearly was that a paper alternative will be available as a safeguard for litigants in person. That is an important measure for vulnerable court users. Will the Minister confirm that?