QCs and Judges: Appointments

House of Lords written question – answered on 6th March 2001.

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Photo of The Earl of Shrewsbury The Earl of Shrewsbury Conservative

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will publish the guidelines on judicial and Queen's Counsel appointments that are applied to ensure that anyone who is aware of political donations made by candidates for appointment has no part in the appointment process and is excluded from seeing files on applicants.

Photo of Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Irvine of Lairg Lord Chancellor, Lord Chancellor's Department, Lord Chancellor

No such guidelines exist. Current guidance makes it clear that the assessment of candidates will be based solely on merit against the criteria for appointment. Neither I nor anyone else involved with the appointment process would normally know if a candidate for judicial appointment or Queen's Counsel has made a donation to any political party, nor would anyone take such an irrelevant fact into account. Candidates are not asked whether they have made political donations.

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