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The independent assessor does not have a dedicated support office, but is able to look to the miscarriages of justice team to support him in administrative duties associated with his role. It is the responsibility of applicants to make written submissions to the independent assessor regarding the quantum of their claims, and he cannot make a final assessment until such time as those submissions have been made and agreed. Of the 38 cases in which a final assessment was made in 2006-07, 28 (76 per cent.) took more than two years from eligibility for compensation being approved to the final assessment. Over the five years from 1 April 2002 to 31 March 2007, the average length of the independent assessment process, that is from eligibility being confirmed to final assessment, was three years. As at 7 June there were 116 cases in which eligibility for compensation has been approved but a final assessment not yet been made. In 79 of those cases (68 per cent.) one or more interim payments have been made, on application by the applicants. There were 16 cases with the independent assessor for final assessment and three cases in which applications for an interim payment have been made. The total fee payments to the independent assessor in each of the last five years were:
The independent assessor does not make deductions from assessments for 'board and lodgings'. In certain circumstances he makes deductions in respect of saved living expenses. This practice was upheld by the House of Lords in a recent appeal. Central records of the amount of such deductions are not kept.
Bridget Prentice: In England and Wales, qualification and regulation as a notary is governed by the Court of Faculties. No person in England and Wales is entitled to practise as a notary public, or do any notarial act unless he has been duly sworn, admitted and enrolled in this court. The Notaries (Qualification) Rules 1998 set out the qualification and admission requirements for becoming a notary.
The Legal Services Bill, which is currently before Parliament, introduces greater competition in the provision of legal services. Under the Bill, notarial services will become a reserved legal activity and it will become possiblesubject to proper authorisation from the Legal Services Boardfor other approved regulators to authorise and licence the provision of these services.
Bridget Prentice: HM Prison Service does not hold central records on the number of staff classified as "without posts". It is a geographically widespread organisation and most aspects of personnel management are devolved to a local level.
Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Minister of State, Ministry of Justice how many staff vacancies there are at each (a) prison establishment, (b) HM Prison Service area and (c) private sector prison; and if she will make a statement. 
|A. Shortfall of staffing availability against requirement by establishment 30 April 2007Public Sector|
|Prison||Shortfall on unified( 1 ) staffing requirement having included CSH( 2)||Shortfall on non-unified staffing requirement having included agency staff|
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