Administration of Justice

Ministry of Justice written question – answered at on 1 June 2023.

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Photo of Damien Moore Damien Moore Conservative, Southport

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will make a comparative assessment of the effectiveness of judicial arrangements (a) before and (b) after the commencement of the Constitutional Reform Act 2005.

Photo of Mike Freer Mike Freer Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice

The Constitutional Reform Act 2005 underpins existing arrangements. It made the Lord Chief Justice the head of the judiciary and transferred to that office a number of judiciary-related functions previously vested in the office of Lord Chancellor. The Act therefore shared responsibilities for the administration of justice between the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice, and it continues to provide the statutory footing for their partnership.

The Act also created the independent Judicial Appointments Commission. The appointment of judges is in general a shared area of responsibility, though the Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice have different roles at different levels of the judiciary.

It is not a current priority to review the arrangements that resulted from the 2005 Act or to assess whether further legislative changes might be necessary. The Lord Chancellor remains committed to maintaining an effective partnership with the judiciary within the existing legal framework.

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