Allegations of lack of competence |
19.53 Under new training arrangements beginning
in the autumn of 1998, training officers will be expected to report
to a Bench Training and Development Committee on the achievement
of the relevant competencies by magistrates. Where a magistrate
fails persistently to reach the required standard so as to call
into question his or her capabilities to remain a magistrate,
the Bench Training and Development Committee shall instruct the
Clerk to the Justices to report the matter to the Advisory Committee.
The report will take the form of a letter, with supporting documentation,
which will include the appraiser's reports. The role of the Advisory
Committee is to satisfy itself that the decision has been reached
in a proper manner and that any review procedure has been properly
followed and, as necessary, exhausted. The Committee should not
concern itself with the substance of the decision which has been
taken. Its task, in this context, is to act as the guarantor
of due process and to make any formal recommendation for removal
to the Lord Chancellor.
19.54 Where, aside from the new training arrangements,
an allegation of lack of competence is made by reference to a
serious and demonstrable diminution in a magistrate of any of
the six key qualities, the complaint should be dealt with in
accordance with the Directions from 19.7(c).