Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will make it her policy for all legislation for which her Department has responsibility to be available online. 
Ms Harman: It is my Department's policy to make all relevant information available via its website as a matter of course unless that information should more correctly be published elsewhere online. For example, Acts of Parliament are published by HMSO. In these latter cases, my Department's policy is to provide links from its website to the information.
Tim Farron: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs whether guidance has been issued to courts requiring the granting of maintenance awards on an equal basis for each parent in cases where custody is awarded on an equal basis. 
Bridget Prentice: No guidance on this matter has been issued to the courts. Under existing legislation the courts are empowered to make a number of orders in relation to the division of family property and financial provision for children. The courts will consider a range of issues in each case, including the contribution, both financial and other, made by each of the parties to looking after the home and children. The courts have the discretion to make the orders that they see as appropriate and fair with regard to the specific circumstances of each case. The needs of children are always the paramount consideration. Orders are made with regard to the financial status, and disposable income, of both parties.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many (a) oral and (b) paper-only family visitor appeals were received by the Immigration Appellate Authority in each month since 1 January 2004. 
Bridget Prentice: Provisional figures show the volume of monthly receipts at the adjudicator tier of the Immigration Appellate Authority (IAA), for the period January 2004 to the end of March 2005, to be as follows:
|Family visitor visa|
|Month||Oral receipts||Paper receipts|
Lynne Jones: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many (a) oral and (b) paper-only family visitor appeals were determined by the Immigration Appellate Authority in each month since 1 January 2004; and how many of each type of appeal were successful. 
Bridget Prentice: Provisional figures for the period January 2004 to March 2005 show the monthly volume of family visitor appeal decisions from an oral hearing, with appeal outcomes, at the adjudicator tier of the Immigration Appellate Authority, to be as follows:
|Month||Total oral decisions||Number allowed||Number dismissed||Number withdrawn|
|Month||Total paper decisions||Number allowed||Number dismissed||Number withdrawn|
Vera Baird: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs (1) what the average time has been between deaths and inquests in the jurisdiction of the Teesside Coroner during the last 12 months; 
Mr. Dodds: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many lay magistrates there are in Northern Ireland, broken down by (a) gender, (b) community background and (c) age. 
Bridget Prentice: The Lord Chancellor recently appointed 272 people to the new judicial office of Lay Magistrate in Northern Ireland. Of these, (a) 46 per cent. are male and 54 per cent. female; (b) 55 per cent. Protestant, 38 per cent. Roman Catholic and 7 per cent. Other, and; (c) 6 per cent. are under the age of 30, 25 per cent. are between the ages of 30 and 40, 24 per cent. are between the ages of 40 and 50, 27 per cent. are between the ages of 50 and 60 and 18 per cent. are over the age of 60.
Mr. Kidney: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs when she plans to publish the findings of the Fundamental Legal Aid Review announced in May 2004; and if she will make a statement. 
Bridget Prentice: We intend to set out our vision for the future of legal aid, outlining the Department's long-term strategy for reform and summarising the key findings of the Fundamental Legal Aid Review, in due course.
The Fraud Bill, which is currently before Parliament, will implement Law Commission proposals to remove the deception offences in the Theft Acts and replace them with a general offence of fraud which can be committed in three waysby false representation, by failure to disclose information or by abuse of position. This will ensure that prosecutors are better placed to undertake short and effective fraud trials.
We intend to set out our vision for the future of Legal Aid, outlining the Department's long term strategy for reform and summarising the key findings of the Fundamental Legal Aid Review, including tackling fraud, in due course.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|