Amendments proposed to the Access to Justice Bill [Lords] - continued House of Commons

back to previous text

Fees on application for appointment as QC

   

Mr Geoffrey Hoon

NC37

To move the following Clause:—

    '.—(1) A person who applies to the Lord Chancellor to be recommended for appointment as Queen's Counsel in England and Wales shall pay a fee to the Lord Chancellor.

    (2) The amount of the fee shall be specified by order made by the Lord Chancellor; and in determining that amount the Lord Chancellor shall have regard to the expenses incurred by him in considering such applications.

    (3) An order under subsection (2) shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

    (4) This section does not affect section 9 of the Great Seal (Offices) Act 1874 (under which fees are charged in respect of the grant of Letters Patent under the Great Seal for appointment as Queen's Counsel).'.


Closure of courthouses

   

Mr John Burnett
Mr Lembit Öpik

NC1

To move the following Clause:—

    '.—(1) Where on the date of coming into force of this Act a courthouse is provided by a paying authority, under section 56 of the Justices of the Peace Act 1997, the Magistrates' Courts Committee shall presume that there is a continuing need for accommodation within the district of each paying authority.

    (2) Where the Lord Chancellor is considering an appeal by a paying authority against a decision by a Magistrates' Courts Committee to close a courthouse, he shall presume that there is a continuing need for the accommodation.

    (3) A paying authority concerned for the purposes of section 56(3) of the Justices of the Peace Act 1997 shall be any local authority whose residents are or may be affected by any decision to close a courthouse.'.


Abolition of indemnity principle

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr David Kidney
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Michael Foster (Hastings and Rye)

NC2

To move the following Clause:—

    'A party to a proceeding shall not be prevented from recovering from another party an amount in respect of costs by any rule of law which limits the costs recoverable by a party to proceedings to the amount which he is liable to pay his legal representative.'.


Abolition of Queen's Counsel

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Dr Alan Whitehead
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Paul Stinchcombe

NC3

To move the following Clause:—

    'The office of Queen's Counsel is abolished.'.


Use of Counsel

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Michael Foster
     (Hastings and Rye)
Mr Mark Todd

NC4

     To move the following Clause:—

    'Rules of Court shall provide that a party to proceedings may instruct

      (a) Queen's Counsel or

      (b) two or more counsel

    to appear at trial or in interlocutory proceedings only with prior leave of the court which leave shall be granted only if in the opinion of the court the instruction of such Counsel is (a) within the overriding objective of the civil justice rules and (b) does not constitute substantial unfairness to any other party.'.


Appointment of Queen's Counsel

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Michael Foster
     (Hastings and Rye)
Mr Paul Stinchcombe
Mr Mark Todd

NC5

     To move the following Clause:—

    '(1) The Lord Chancellor shall publish not less than two months before Maundy Thursday each year a list of those applying to be appointed Queen's Counsel.

    (2) Prior to recommending any person for appointment as Queen's Counsel the Lord Chancellor shall consider

      (a) any representations made by the public in response to the list referred to in subsection (1) above; and

      (b) the extent to which the applicant has

          (i) undertaken pro bono work in the previous three years, and

          (ii) indicated a willingness to undertake pro bono work if appointed Queen's Counsel.

    (3) Any new appointment as Queen's Counsel shall be for a fixed term of not more than five years renewable upon application in such manner and subject to such conditions and fees as the Lord Chancellor shall specify by order.'.


Assessment of costs

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Michael Foster
     (Hastings and Rye)
Mr Mark Todd

NC6

     To move the following Clause:—

    'When assessing standard costs payable by another party to an action, the court shall assess any amount payable in respect of counsels' fees by reference to the experience and seniority of counsel concerned and shall disregard the fact (if it is the case) that counsel concerned holds the office of Queen's Counsel.'.


Judicial Appointments Commission

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr David Kidney
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Paul Stinchcombe
Dr Alan Whitehead
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Mark Todd

NC7

     To move the following Clause:—

    '(1) The Lord Chancellor shall appoint persons to form a body to be known as the Judicial Appointments Commission.

    (2) In appointing persons to the Commission the Lord Chancellor shall have regard to the desirability of securing that the Commission includes persons who (between them) have experience in or knowledge of—

      (a) the judiciary;

      (b) the legal professions;

      (c) legal education and training;

      (d) the maintenance of professional standards in the legal profession and in other professions;

      (e) consumer affairs;

      (f) social conditions.

    (3) The Commission shall have the duties of

      (a) setting criteria for appointment to the different ranks of the judiciary;

      (b) inviting applications from candidates for full-time and part-time judicial vacancies;

      (c) investigating and evaluating candidates for judicial office;

      (d) recommending suitable candidates for appointment to a panel from which the Lord Chancellor shall fill judicial vacancies;

      (e) making arrangements to evaluate the performance of members of the judiciary and making recommendations to the Lord Chancellor consequent upon such evaluations.'.


Register of judicial interests

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr David Kidney
Dr Alan Whitehead
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Paul Stinchcombe
Mr Mark Todd

NC8

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1) The Lord Chancellor shall appoint a Registrar of Judicial Interests;

    (2) The Lord Chancellor shall by order require every member of the judiciary to notify to the Registrar such particulars of his pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests and in such manner as the Lord Chancellor shall by order specify together with any alterations which may occur therein;

    (3) The Registrar shall cause these particulars to be entered in a Register of Judicial Interests which shall be available for inspection by the public in such places and at such times as the Lord Chancellor shall by order specify.'.


Court dress

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Mark Todd

NC9

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1) The wearing of wigs in court by judges and advocates as part of court dress is abolished.

    (2) The Lord Chancellor shall within six months of the commencement date of this Act by order lay down rules for court dress.

    (3) In exercising the duty specified in subsection (2) above the Lord Chancellor shall ensure that the rules provide for the same court dress requirements for all advocates.

    (4) For the purposes of this section "advocate" shall mean barristers (whether leading or junior counsel) and solicitors.'.


Major accidents

   

Mr Andrew Dismore
Mr Martin Linton
Mr Keith Darvill
Mr Michael Foster (Hastings and Rye)

NC10

To move the following Clause:—

    '(1) The Lord Chancellor may grant any person who is appointed to chair a public inquiry into any accident or incident which has resulted in death the powers and duties of a coroner conducting an inquest;

    (2) In the event of a coroner's powers and duties being granted in accordance with subsection (1) no inquest shall be held into any death in relation to which the chairman exercises those duties or powers;

    (3) Any findings of fact made by the chairman of a public inquiry into any accident or incident resulting in death or serious personal injury shall be receivable in evidence and shall be binding in any subsequent civil proceedings to the extent the chairman specifies in his report of the inquiry.'.


Estimates and accounts

   

Mr Edward Garnier
Mr Dominic Grieve
Mr John M. Taylor
Mr Tony Baldry
Mr Laurence Robertson
Mr Nick Hawkins

NC11

To move the following Clause—

    '. The Commission shall prepare and publish estimates and accounts to show the following—

      (a) the setting up costs of all the services for which they are responsible;

      (b) the administrative running costs for all the services for which they are responsible;

      (c) the cost of the legal services for which they are responsible; and

      (d) the cost of disbursements within those legal services for which they are responsible.'.


Community Legal Service and Criminal Defence Service Review Body

   

Mr Edward Garnier
Mr Dominic Grieve
Mr John M. Taylor
Mr Tony Baldry
Mr Laurence Robertson
Mr Nick Hawkins

NC12

To move the following Clause:—

    '.—(1) There shall be a body known as the Community Legal Services and Criminal Defence Service Review Body (in this section referred to as "the Review Body").

    (2) The Review Body's functions shall be—

      (a) to advise the Lord Chancellor as to appropriate target incomes for those providing services under the Community Legal Service or the Criminal Defence Service;

      (b) to advise the Lord Chancellor as to the pricing of contracts so as to secure those target levels.

    (3) In advising the Lord Chancellor, the Review Body shall suggest target levels which enable those receiving services from the Commission to obtain good quality services, and subject to that, provide the best value for money.

    (4) The Commission shall consist of—

      (a) not fewer than seven members, and

      (b) not more than twelve members;

    but the Lord Chancellor may by order substitute for either or both of the numbers for the time being specified in paragraphs (a) and (b) such other number or numbers as he thinks appropriate.

    (5) The members of the Commission shall be appointed by the Lord Chancellor, and the Lord Chancellor shall appoint one of the members to chair the Commission.

    (6) In appointing persons to be members of the Commission the Lord Chancellor shall have regard to the desirability of securing that the Commission includes persons with experience in or knowledge of—

      (a) the provision of services which the Commission can fund as part of the Community Legal Service or Criminal Defence Service,

      (b) the work of the courts,

      (c) social conditions, and

      (d) management.'.

 
previous section contents continue
 

©Parliamentary copyright 1998
Prepared 11 May 1999