Results 21–40 of 2000 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Bridget Prentice

Petition — Badman Report (Sherwood): Ex Parte Applications (Family Courts) (20 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I congratulate my hon. Friend the Member for Liverpool, Walton (Mr. Kilfoyle) on securing this debate on a subject about which he is clearly passionate. It affects people at a most vulnerable time in their lives, and I know how strongly he feels about the way in which private disputes concerning children are resolved in our court system. The way in which ex parte relief is obtained in family...

Petition — Badman Report (Sherwood): Ex Parte Applications (Family Courts) (20 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I shall come on to that point in some detail. My hon. Friend gave some examples of occasions when ex parte applications have to be heard. Sometimes it is because the individual cannot be found, but more often in domestic violence cases, it is because an abused woman needs the protection of the courts speedily. Generally, applications are heard with neither party in attendance, although that...

Petition — Badman Report (Sherwood): Ex Parte Applications (Family Courts) (20 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I will give way to the hon. Gentleman, but I am conscious of the time.

Petition — Badman Report (Sherwood): Ex Parte Applications (Family Courts) (20 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I will have to think about whether it would be appropriate for the review to do that. I promise the hon. Gentleman and my hon. Friend that I will look into that. As my hon. Friend knows, I was in touch with the president of the family division about this case when he raised it with me before. At that time, the president felt that no further guidance was needed. I will go back to him and ask...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Court Cases (5 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I, too, add my condolences to the family of David Taylor, who was indeed an excellent parliamentarian. The court has no power to end cases for administrative reasons. From July to September last year, of the 45,500 magistrates court trials, 44 per cent. went ahead as scheduled, 38 per cent. were cracked-in other words, the defendant pleaded guilty on day one-and 18 per cent. did not go...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Court Cases (5 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: The hon. Gentleman makes a reasonable point: 18 per cent. is still too high. However, that figure of 18 per cent. is significantly down on the percentage seven or eight years ago. The figures then were 23.7 per cent. in the Crown court, down to 13 per cent. in the latest figures, and 31 per cent. in the magistrates courts, down to 18 per cent., as I have just mentioned. We are absolutely...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Court Cases (5 Jan 2010)

Bridget Prentice: I do not think that it is for me to comment on what the DPP says going around the country; that is a matter for him. If he has concerns about Opposition policies, perhaps it is right that he raises them so that people can then make a proper judgment. However, I say to the hon. Gentleman, again, that bureaucratic reasons do not stop cases going to trial. In the majority of cases, the reason is...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Debt Management (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Helping those in financial difficulties is an important part of our purpose. Of course, that has to be balanced against creditors' right to recover their debts. In September this year, we published the consultation paper "Debt Management Schemes-delivering effective and balanced solutions for debtors and creditors", which seeks views on whether there is a need to intervene further in this...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Debt Management (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: My hon. Friend makes an important point. One of the strands of the review is to look at the behaviour of creditors who continue to add interest to debts where there is already a debt management plan. She is right to raise the concerns of NACAB and others, and we will listen carefully to what they say. I hope that she and anyone else in the House who has such examples will bring them forward...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Debt Management (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Again, I endorse what my hon. Friend says. All those issues will be part of the review, and I hope that it will come up with some solutions and a way forward in the near future.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Defendants who are acquitted in criminal trials should normally receive their reasonable costs from central funds unless the court decides that it is not appropriate to award those costs. Overall, central funds expenditure was £62 million in 2007-08 and £77 million in 2008-09. On current indications, I have no reason to believe that it will not increase during 2009-10.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Yes, that is the case, but it is of course up to the court to decide whether the award of costs is appropriate.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Where the hon. Lady is mistaken is in her understanding of the system. First, it is essential that we target our resources effectively. Secondly, what will be paid from central funds is costs at the same level as legal aid costs. If people wish to pay more than that, that is entirely up them and it is a choice that they make. They will be paid from central funds costs equivalent to legal aid,...

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: I congratulate the hon. Lady on her rise to Parliament. I hope that she will attend Justice questions regularly. I refer her to the answer that I gave a short time ago: defendants who are acquitted in criminal trials should normally receive their reasonable costs, unless the court decides otherwise.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: As I have said, it is essential that we target our resources effectively. Costs are available to defendants in criminal cases in the Crown court where they have been acquitted, but those costs are staged at the level of legal aid costs. In other words, they should get the same as they should get had they been legally aided.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Criminal Trial Acquittals (Costs) (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: Of course they are not legally aided-that is the point-but the level of costs that they will get back from the taxpayer from central funds will be the same as if they had been legally aided. That is fair both to them and to legally aided defendants.

Oral Answers to Questions — Justice: Topical Questions (10 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: I will take great pleasure in giving that kick to those authorities. My hon. Friend has campaigned long and hard on that issue, and he is absolutely right. We have sent out guidance on at least two occasions, and if necessary we will do so again and hope that, this time, they pay some attention.

Perpetuities and Accumulations Bill [ Lords] (2 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: I thank the hon. Members for North-West Norfolk (Mr. Bellingham) and for Cambridge (David Howarth) for their support for the Bill both on the Floor of the House and in Committee. In particular, I thank the hon. Member for Cambridge, who succinctly put to bed-I hope-some concerns that the hon. Member for North-West Norfolk had. Indeed, if we live more than 125 years-God preserve us-the period...

Perpetuities and Accumulations Bill [ Lords] (2 Nov 2009)

Bridget Prentice: I beg to move, That the Bill be now read the Third time. It is a pleasure to be here to guide the Perpetuities and Accumulations Bill through its final stage in the House. It is a good example of the valuable expert work that the Law Commission has done to simplify the law, particularly in those areas that are difficult and truly lawyers' law. I want to take this opportunity to thank the...

English Libel Law (Parliamentary Proceedings) — [Mr. Roger Gale in the Chair] (21 Oct 2009)

Bridget Prentice: I will do my best to be robust and brave, but I accept the view of the hon. Member for North-West Norfolk (Mr. Bellingham) that I will not be able to solve the libel laws in the next 10 minutes. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Justice is very much a parliamentarian-a parliamentary figure-and he will take on board every single issue that hon. Members have raised today. In that...


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