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Crime and Courts Bill [HL] 2012-13

 

 

Last updated: 2nd March 2013

 

 

Crime and Courts Bill [HL] 2012-13

 Debating

in the

House of Commons

Subject: Report Stage

Location: TBC

on

Date: 13th March 2013

Time: TBC

 

 Report Stage – Chance for the whole House to discuss and amend the Bill. Report stage gives MPs an opportunity, on the floor of the House, to consider further amendments (proposals for change) to a Bill which has been examined in committee.

There is no set time period between the end of committee stage and the start of the report stage.

Report Stage: 1st sitting: (1) (2)

13th March 2013

Hansard

TV

 

Committee Stage – Line by line examination of the Bill is where detailed examination of the Bill takes place. It usually starts within a couple of weeks of a Bill’s second reading, although this is not guaranteed.

Government Bills are usually formally timetabled after they have received a second reading.

Committee Debate: 1st sitting: (1) (2)

22nd Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 2nd sitting: (1) (2)

22nd Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 3rd sitting:  (1) (2)

24th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 4th sitting: (1) (2)

24th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 5th sitting:  (1) (2)

29th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 6th sitting:  (1) (2)

29th Jan 2013

Hansard 

TV

Associated Memoranda submitted by Prison Reform Trust (C&C10)

29th Jan 2013

 Hansard

       – –

Associated Memoranda submitted by National Council of Women of Great Britain Trust (C&C11)

29th Jan 2013

Hansard

– –

Committee Debate: 7th sitting: (1) (2)

31st Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Committee Debate: 8th sitting:  (1) (2)

31st Jan 2013

Hansard 

TV

Committee Stage   

5th Feb 2013

8:55am

 

Committee Stage

5th Feb 2013

 

14:00pm

Committee Stage

7th Feb 2013

11:30am

 

Committee Stage

7th Feb 2013

 

14:00pm

Committee Stage

12th Feb 2013

8:55am

 

Committee Stage

12th Feb 2013

 

14:00pm

Committee Stage

14th Feb 2013

11:30am

 

Committee Stage

14th Feb 2013

 

14:00pm

 

 

2nd Reading – Second reading is the first opportunity for MPs to debate the main principles of the Bill. It usually takes place no sooner than two weekends after first reading.

 

(Day 1)

14th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Programme motion: House of Commons

14th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Money resolution: House of Commons

14th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

Ways and Means resolution: House of Commons

14th Jan 2013

Hansard

TV

 

 

1st ReadingFirst reading is the first stage of a Bill’s passage through the House of Commons – usually a formality, it takes place without debate.

(Day 1)

     19th Dec 2012      (No Debate)

Hansard

TV

 THIS BILL NOW MOVES TO THE HOUSE OF COMMONS

 

 

3rd Reading – Third reading in the chamber is the final chance for the Lords to debate and change the contents of a bill.

(Day 1)

18th Dec 2012

Hansard

TV

 

 

Report stagegives all members of the Lords further opportunity to examine and make changes, known as amendments, to a bill.

(Day 4)

12th Dec 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 3) 

10th Dec 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 2)

4th Dec 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 1)

27th Nov 2012

Hansard

TV

 

 

Committee stage Detailed line by line examination of the separate parts (clauses and schedules) of the bill takes place during committee stage. Any member of the Lords can take part.

(Day 8)

13th Nov 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 7)

30th Oct 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 6)

4th July 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 5)

2nd July 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 4)

27th June 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 3)

25th June 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 2)

20th June 2012

Hansard

TV

(Day 1)

18th June 2012

Hansard

TV

 

Second reading the general debate on all aspects of the Bill – took place on 28 May 2012. A list of expected speakers, updated regularly, can be found on the Lords Government Whips Office website.

 

First reading took place on 10 May 2012. This stage is a formality that signals the start of the Bill’s journey through the Lords.

 THIS BILL STARTS IN THE HOUSE OF LORDS

 

 

Summary of the Bill

A Bill to establish, and make provision about, the National Crime Agency; to abolish the Serious Organised Crime Agency and the National Policing Improvement Agency; to make provision about the judiciary and the structure, administration, proceedings and powers of courts and tribunals; to make provision about border control; to make provision about drugs and driving; and for connected purposes.

 

 

Bill stages — Crime and Courts Bill [HL] 2012-13

Dates for all stages of the passage of the Bill, including links to the debates.

 

Stage Date
1st reading: House of Lords 1st reading: House of Lords 10 May, 2012 10.05.2012
2nd reading: House of Lords 2nd reading: House of Lords 28 May, 2012 28.05.2012
Committee: 1st sitting: House of Lords Committee: 1st sitting: House of Lords 18 June, 2012 18.06.2012
Committee: 2nd sitting: House of Lords Committee: 2nd sitting: House of Lords 20 June, 2012 20.06.2012
Committee: 3rd sitting: House of Lords Committee: 3rd sitting: House of Lords 25 June, 2012 25.06.2012
Committee: 4th sitting: House of Lords Committee: 4th sitting: House of Lords 27 June, 2012 27.06.2012
Committee: 5th sitting: House of Lords Committee: 5th sitting: House of Lords 2 July, 2012 02.07.2012
Committee: 6th sitting: House of Lords Committee: 6th sitting: House of Lords 4 July, 2012 04.07.2012
Committee: 7th sitting: House of Lords Committee: 7th sitting: House of Lords 30 October, 2012 30.10.2012
Committee: 8th sitting: House of Lords Committee: 8th sitting: House of Lords 13 November, 2012 13.11.2012
Report: 1st sitting: House of Lords Report: 1st sitting: House of Lords 27 November, 2012 27.11.2012
Report: 2nd sitting: House of Lords Report: 2nd sitting: House of Lords 4 December, 2012 04.12.2012
Report: 3rd sitting: House of Lords Report: 3rd sitting: House of Lords 10 December, 2012 10.12.2012
Report: 4th sitting: House of Lords Report: 4th sitting: House of Lords 12 December, 2012 12.12.2012
3rd reading: House of Lords 3rd reading: House of Lords 18 December, 2012 18.12.2012
1st reading: House of Commons 1st reading: House of Commons (no debate) 19.12.2012
2nd reading: House of Commons 2nd reading: House of Commons 14 January, 2013 14.01.2013
Programme motion: House of Commons Programme motion: House of Commons 14 January, 2013 14.01.2013
Money resolution: House of Commons Money resolution: House of Commons 14 January, 2013 14.01.2013
Ways and Means resolution: House of Commons Ways and Means resolution: House of Commons 14 January, 2013 14.01.2013
Committee Debate: 1st sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 1st sitting: House of Commons 22 January, 2013 (1) (2) 22.01.2013
Committee Debate: 2nd sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 2nd sitting: House of Commons 22 January, 2013 (1) (2) 22.01.2013
Committee Debate: 3rd sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 3rd sitting: House of Commons 24 January, 2013 (1) (2) 24.01.2013
Committee Debate: 4th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 4th sitting: House of Commons 24 January, 2013 (1) (2) 24.01.2013
Committee Debate: 5th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 5th sitting: House of Commons 29 January, 2013 (1) (2) 29.01.2013
Committee Debate: 6th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 6th sitting: House of Commons 29 January, 2013 (1) (2) 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Prison Reform Trust (C&C10): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Prison Reform Trust (C&C10): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by National Council of Women of Great Britain Trust (C&C11): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by National Council of Women of Great Britain Trust (C&C11): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Criminal Justice Alliance (C&C13): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Criminal Justice Alliance (C&C13): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by The Howard League for Penal Reform (C&C14): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by The Howard League for Penal Reform (C&C14): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Christopher Valaitis (C&C12): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Christopher Valaitis (C&C12): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C15): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C15): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C16): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C16): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C17): House of Commons Associated Memoranda submitted by Home Office supplementary evidence (C&C17): House of Commons 29 January, 2013 29.01.2013
Committee Debate: 7th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 7th sitting: House of Commons 31 January, 2013 (1) (2) 31.01.2013
Committee Debate: 8th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 8th sitting: House of Commons 31 January, 2013 (1) (2) 31.01.2013
Committee Debate: 9th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 9th sitting: House of Commons 5 February, 2013 (1) (2) 05.02.2013
Committee Debate: 10th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 10th sitting: House of Commons 5 February, 2013 (1) (2) 05.02.2013
Committee Debate: 11th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 11th sitting: House of Commons 7 February, 2013 (1) (2) 07.02.2013
Committee Debate: 12th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 12th sitting: House of Commons 12 February, 2013 (1) (2) 12.02.2013
Committee Debate: 13th sitting: House of Commons Committee Debate: 13th sitting: House of Commons 12 February, 2013 (1) (2) 12.02.2013
Report stage: House of Commons Report stage: House of Commons 13.03.2013
3rd reading: House of Commons 3rd reading: House of Commons 13.03.2013

 

Bills

Full text of the Bill as introduced and further versions of the Bill as it is reprinted to incorporate amendments (proposals for change) made during its passage through Parliament.

 

House Bill Date
Commons Bill 115 2012-13 (as Brought from the Lords) | PDF version, 1MB 20.12.2012
Lords HL Bill 70 2012-13 (as amended on Report) | PDF version, 1MB 13.12.2012
Lords HL Bill 49 2012-13 (as amended in Committee) | PDF version, 1MB 31.10.2012
Lords HL Bill 4 2012-13 (as introduced) | PDF version, 1MB 11.05.2012

 

Explanatory Notes

Documents prepared by the Government to explain the purpose of the Bill.

 

House Explanatory Notes Date
Commons Bill 115 EN 2012-13 | PDF version, 643KB 20.12.2012
Lords HL Bill EN 4 2012-13 | PDF version, 324KB 15.05.2012

 

 

Amendment papers

Full list of amendment papers relating to the Bill. Individual amendment papers will be replaced with consolidated lists before the amendments are discussed.

 

House Amendment Paper Date
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 28 February 2013 | PDF version, 123KB 01.03.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 27 February 2013 | PDF version 28.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 12 February 2013 | PDF version, 320KB 12.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 7 February 2013 | PDF version, 203KB 07.02.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 5 February 2013 | PDF version, 163KB 06.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 5 February 2013 | PDF version, 75KB 05.02.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments as at 31 January 2013 | PDF version, 152KB 01.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 30 January 2013 | PDF version, 50KB 31.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 29 January 2013 | PDF version, 16KB 30.01.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 29 January 2013 | PDF version 29.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 25 January 2013 | PDF version, 124KB 28.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 24 January 2013 | PDF version, 133KB 25.01.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 24 January 2013 | PDF version, 164KB 24.01.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Amendments as at 22 January 2013 | PDF version, 168KB 22.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given up to and including 18 January 2013 | PDF version, 163KB 21.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 17 January 2013 | PDF version, 135KB 18.01.2013
Commons Notices of Amendments given on 16 January 2013 | PDF version, 31KB 17.01.2013
Lords Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Third Reading as at 17 December 2012 18.12.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Third Reading as at 14 December 2012 17.12.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved on Report [Supplementary to the Fourth Marshalled List] as at 11 December 2012 12.12.2012
Lords Fourth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 10 December 2012 11.12.2012
Lords Revised Third Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 7 December 2012 10.12.2012
Lords Third Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 6 December 2012 07.12.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved on Report (Supplementary to the Revised Second Marshalled List) as at 5 December 2012 06.12.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved on Report (Supplementary to the Revised Second Marshalled List) as at 4 December 2012 05.12.2012
Lords Revised Second Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 3 December 2012 04.12.2012
Lords Second Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 30 November 2012 03.12.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Report (Supplementary to the Marshalled List) as at 29 November 2012 29.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Report (Supplementary to the Marshalled List) as at 27 November 2012 28.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Report (Supplementary to the Marshalled List) as at 26 November 2012 27.11.2012
Lords Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved on Report as at 23 November 2012 24.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Report as at 22 November 2012 23.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved on Report as at 20 November 2012 21.11.2012
Lords Revised Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee (on recommitment) as at 12 November 2012 13.11.2012
Lords Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee (on recommitment) as at 9 November 2012 12.11.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved on Report as at 8 November 2012 09.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee (on recommitment) as at 8 November 2012 09.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee (on recommitment) as at 7 November 2012 08.11.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee (on recommitment) as at 6 November 2012 07.11.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved on Report as at 31 October 2012 01.11.2012
Lords Seventh Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee as at 26 October 2012 29.10.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved in Committee of the Whole House (Supplementary to the Sixth Marshalled List) as at 25 October 2012 26.10.2012
Lords Supplementary to the Sixth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 23 October 2012 24.10.2012
Lords Supplementary to the Sixth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 3 July 2012 04.07.2012
Lords Sixth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 2 July 2012 03.07.2012
Lords Fifth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 28 June 2012 29.06.2012
Lords Supplementary to the Revised Fourth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 27 June 2012 28.06.2012
Lords Revised Fourth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 26 June 2012 27.06.2012
Lords Fourth Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 25 June 2012 26.06.2012
Lords Supplementary to the Third Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 22 June 2012 25.06.2012
Lords Third Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 21 June 2012 22.06.2012
Lords Supplementary to the Revised Second Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 20 June 2012 21.06.2012
Lords Revised Second Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 19 June 2012 20.06.2012
Lords Second Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the Whole House as at 18 June 2012 19.06.2012
Lords Revised Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the whole House as at 15 June 2012 18.06.2012
Lords Marshalled List of Amendments to be moved in Committee of the whole House as at 14 June 2012 15.06.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee as at 13 June 2012 14.06.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee as at 12 June 2012 13.06.2012
Lords Amendments to be moved in Committee as at 11 June 2012 12.06.2012
Lords Amendment to be moved in Committee as at 29 May 2012 30.05.2012

 

Public Bill Committee and report stage proceedings: Commons

Details of the Public Bill Committee and report stage proceedings in the House of Commons. The documents contain the text of amendments considered at each sitting and show whether it was agreed to, negatived (not agreed), not called, not moved or withdrawn.

 

House Public Bill Committee and report stage proceedings: Commons Date
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 12 February 2013 | PDF version, 315KB 13.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 7 February 2013 | PDF version, 124KB 08.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 5 February 2013 | PDF version, 145KB 06.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 31 January 2013 | PDF version, 21KB 01.02.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 29 January 2013 | PDF version, 134KB 30.01.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 24 January 2013 | PDF version, 133KB 25.01.2013
Commons Public Bill Committee Proceedings as at 22 January 2013 | PDF version, 128KB 23.01.2013

 

 

Research papers

House of Commons Library Research Papers and House of Lords Library Notes aim to be politically impartial. They contain factual information as well as a range of opinions on each subject. Research Papers and Library Notes on Bills are produced before Second Reading and, in the Commons, after Committee Stage.

 

House Research Paper Date
Commons Briefing Paper on Second Reading 09.01.2013

 

Selection of amendments: Commons

In the House of Commons, amendments are grouped together so that amendments relating to a particular topic or issue are discussed together.

 

House Selection of amendments: Commons Date
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 7 (PDF, 66KB) 12.02.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 6 (PDF, 67KB) 06.02.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 5 (PDF, 68KB) 04.02.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 4 (PDF, 68KB) 31.01.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 3 (PDF, 69KB) 29.01.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 2 (PDF, 69KB) 24.01.2013
Commons Consideration in Committee: Selection 1 (PDF, 70KB) 21.01.2013

 

Compare versions of Bills: Commons

The latest illustrative versions of the Bill, showing changes made in a Public Bill Committee in the House of Commons

House Compare versions of Bills: Commons Date
Commons Version of the bill showing changes made in committee (PDF, 1MB) 20.02.2013

 

Impact Assessments

List of related Impact Assessments

House Impact Assessments Date
Overarching Impact Assessment (MoJ provisions) (PDF, 866KB) 20.12.2012
Overarching Impact Assessment (Parts 1 and 3) (PDF, 3MB) 18.12.2012
Overarching Impact Assessment (PDF, 276KB) 26.04.2012
Impact Assessment – Parts 1 and 3 (PDF, 308KB) 12.04.2012

 

Contact Home Office

Contact us with any comments or questions about the bill.
Date: Tue May 08 14:59:56 BST 2012

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About the bill

The bill was introduced in the House of Lords at its first reading stage (formal introduction) on 10 May. It aims to establish the National Crime Agency and suggests abolishing the Serious Organised Crime Agency and the National Policing Improvement Agency.

It also examines the structure, administration, proceedings and powers of courts and tribunals and addresses issues like border control and drugs and driving.

 

 

Lords Speakers, in alphabetical order: 2nd reading: House of Lords | 28.05.2012

01•  B Doocey
02•  B Smith of Basildon  (opposition winder)
03•  Bp Birmingham 
04•  L Beecham  (opposition opener)
05•  L Henley (Minister)
06•  L McNally (Minister)
07•  L Wasserman
08•  L Alderdice
09•  L Berkeley  (speak early)
10•  B Butler-Sloss
11•  L Condon
12•  L Dear
13•  L Elton
14•  L Elystan-Morgan
15•  B Hamwee
16•  L Harris of Haringey
17•  B Harris of Richmond
18•  B Jay of Paddington  (speak early please)
19•  L Judd
20•  B Kennedy of The Shaws

21•  E Listowel
22•  L Lloyd of Berwick

23 L Mackay of Clashfern
24•
B Neuberger
25• L Ponsonby of Shulbrede
26•  B Prashar

27•  L Prescott
28•  L Ramsbotham 
29•  V Simon
30•  L Thomas of Gresford
31•  L Touhig
32•  L Woolf

Members of the House of Lords examine matters of public interest, so you may find you want to get in touch with an individual Lord. You may have many reasons for contacting a member, such as asking them about a bill they are working on.

 

Contact a member of the lords

Members mostly attend the House when a piece of work requires their special knowledge, so the best way to contact them is in writing. Make sure that your correspondence is addressed to a specific member and posted to The House of Lords, London, SW1A 0PW. The letter will be passed to the member in the House or forwarded on.

Mailshots are only accepted if individually named, stamped and addressed to The SW1 Delivery Office, 53 Nine Elms Lane, London, SW8 5BB.

You can get in touch with members of the Lords who have individual phone numbers through the main Parliament operator on 020 7219 3000, or via the message service on 020 7219 5353. Faxes can be sent to 020 7219 5979 (bulk faxes to members are not accepted).

Make Justice Work (MJW) sent a briefing out to Peers before the secong reading of the Crime and Courts bill and were very pleased to read there was support from peers for effective community sentences.

You can read  MJW’s briefing document here.

 

 

What we know so far

Part 1 of the government’s Crime and Courts Bill  – (sponsored by the Home Office) – will create a new National Crime Agency (NCA) and abolish the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA)..   See the text of the Bill as it stood at First Reading and Explanatory Notes

Part 2Courts and Justice.  In Part 2 there are various provisions addressing civil and family proceedings; judicial appointments and deployment of the judiciary; payment of fines; enabling the making and use of films and other records of proceedings and community and other non-custodial sentencing. In addition Part 3 Clause 27 – Drugs and Driving.  As frequently happens, it is likely that further provisions will be tagged on to this Bill as it passes through Parliament.  The opportunity for Ministers to do this seems to be irresistible.

 

Civil and Family Proceedings:  Clause 17 – Unified County Court and a new Family Court

The County Courts Act 1984 is amended.  A new section A1 is inserted which will create a single County Court for England and Wales.   The court will have the jurisdiction and powers conferred on it – (a) by or under the Crime and Courts Act or any other Act; (b) by or under any Act, or Measure, of the National Assembly for Wales.  The court will be a “court of record” and will have a seal.  Sections 1 and 2 of the County Courts Act 1984 requiring County Courts to be held for Districts will be repealed.

The Bill also inserts Part 4A into the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 to create a Family Court for England and Wales.  It will have the jurisdiction and powers conferred on it – (a) by or under the Crime and Courts Act or any other Act; (b) by or under any Act, or Measure, of the National Assembly for Wales.  The court will be a “court of record” and will have a seal.

Part 2 of the Children, Schools and Families Act 2010 (family proceedings) is repealed.  This will remove from the statute book a so far unimplemented scheme relating to publication of information relating to family proceedings.  (See Commenting on Family Cases 17th May 2011).  There are also further repeals relating to this Act.

Clause 17 also gives effect to Schedule 9 (amendments in connection with the county court replacing the existing county courts) has effect and Schedules 10 and 11 (amendments in connection with the establishment of the family court).  These Schedules are, in themselves, very detailed and they will be supplemented by both court rules and Regulations.

At the present time, there are some 170 County Courts in England and Wales.   Each has its won legal identity and serves a defined geographical area.  Certain civil matters, for example in respect of proceedings in contract and tort or actions for the recovery of land, can be dealt with by all county courts, whereas other civil cases, for example family proceedings, certain contested probate actions and bankruptcy claims, are handled by designated county courts.  The idea of forming a single County Court goes back at least to the report by Sir Henry Brooke – “Should the Civil Courts be Unified?” – (August 2008).  In March 2011, the Ministry of Justice issued a consultation “Solving disputes in the county courts: creating a simpler, quicker and more proportionate systemand views were sought as to whether a single county court should be established.

Family proceedings are currently heard at first instance in the magistrates’ courts (family proceedings courts), the county courts and the High Court. While the Family Procedure Rules 2010 largely govern the practices and procedures of all courts dealing with family proceedings, each court’s family jurisdiction is constituted and governed by a variety of different statues. For example section 33(1) of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 allows the Lord Chancellor to designate certain county courts as “divorce county courts”, which have jurisdiction to hear and determine any matrimonial matters.

In March 2010, the Family Justice Review Panel, chaired by David Norgrove and commissioned by the Ministry of Justice, the Department for Education, and the Welsh Government, began their review of the family justice system in England and Wales. In November 2011 the Family Justice Review Panel published their final report Family Justice Review Final Report  in which they recommended a single family court, with a single point of entry.  This would replace the current three tiers of court.

Prior to publication of the Panel’s final report the Government consulted on the Panel’s interim report and recommendation Family Justice Review – Interim Report . An analysis of consultation responses was integrated into the Panel’s final report.  The majority of respondents to the consultation (75%) agreed that a single family court should be created.  The Norgrove Report was considered in some detail on this blog.

The creation of the Family Court requires legislation.  However, there are many other developments taking place in family law – see Family Justice Modernisation Programme

 

 

Judicial appointments – Clause 18 – this clause gives effect to Schedule 12 which is divided into 5 parts.  Part 1 provides for there to be no more than the equivalent of 12 full-time judges of the Supreme Court, rather than exactly 12 judges, and makes provision about their selection.  Part 2 contains provisions to facilitate greater diversity among judges. Part 3 amends provisions about membership of the Judicial Appointments Commission. Part 4 makes provision about selection for certain judicial  appointments, and provides for the transfer, from the Lord Chancellor to the Lord Chief Justice or the Senior President of Tribunals, of functions in connection with selection for and appointment to judicial offices.Part 5 abolishes the office of assistant Recorder.

The Constitutional Reform Act 2005 (“the CRA”) made a number of substantial changes to the process for selecting and appointing various judicial office holders within the United Kingdom.   Part 4 of the CRA, which established the Judicial Appointments Commission, now governs the selection and appointment process for appointing judicial office holders to the courts in England and Wales, together with appointments to specified tribunals in the United Kingdom.   A Supreme Court of the United Kingdom was also established by section 23 of the CRA.   A separate process for selecting and appointing the President, Deputy President and Justices of the UK Supreme Court is governed by Part 3 of the CRA.

In November 2011, the Ministry of Justice published a consultation document entitled Appointments and Diversity: A Judiciary for the 21st Century.  The consultation sought views on legislative changes to achieve the proper balance between executive, judicial and independent responsibilities and to improve clarity, transparency and openness in the judicial appointments process.   In addition the consultation also sought views on creating a more diverse judiciary that is reflective of society.   The Government published its response to the consultation on 11 May 2012. 

 

 

Deployment of the JudiciaryClause 19 – The Lord Chief Justice’s deployment responsibility includes (so far as it would not otherwise do so, and subject to having regard to the responsibilities of the Senior President of Tribunals) responsibility for the maintenance of appropriate arrangements for –

(a) the deployment to tribunals of judiciary deployable to tribunals, and
(b) the deployment to courts in England and Wales of judiciary deployable to such courts.

Effect is given to Schedule 13 (which makes provision for deployment of judiciary to courts and tribunals).

Schedule 13 makes amendments to enable the Lord Chief Justice to deploy judges more flexibly across different courts and tribunals of equivalent or lower status.

 

 

Payment of fines Clause 20 is concerned with amending the law relating to payment of fines and other sums.  Clause 21 – deals with disclosure of information for calculating fees of courts, tribunals etc.

Clause 20 of the Bill will enable the imposition and recovery of a charge imposed on offenders for the costs of collecting or pursuing financial penalties and clarifies the role of the fines officer.

 

 

Disclosure of information for calculating fees of courts, tribunals etc.  – Clause 21 – The clause is concerned with “fee remission applications” which can be made under various enactments – e.g. Courts Act 2003 s92 or Constitutional Reform Act 2005 s52 etc.  When an application is made it will be possible for social security information or tax credit information or finances information to be disclosed to a “relevant person.”

 

 

Enabling the making, and use, of films and other recordings of proceedings. Clause 22 –  In England and Wales, the recording and broadcasting of the proceedings of a court or tribunal is prohibited by section 41 of the Criminal Justice Act 1925 and section 9 of the Contempt of Court Act 1981.  It is an offence to breach section 41 of the Criminal Justice Act 1925 and it is a contempt of court to breach section 9 of the Contempt of Court Act 1981. By virtue of section 47 of Constitutional Reform Act 2005, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom is exempt from the prohibition in the Criminal Justice Act 1925 and proceedings are routinely recorded and broadcast.

The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice made a written ministerial statement on 6 September 2011 stating his intention to allow, in limited circumstances and with certain safeguards, the recording and broadcasting of certain aspects of court proceedings. Clause 22 provides the Lord Chancellor with powers to bring forward secondary legislation, with the consent of the Lord Chief Justice, to give effect to this.

 

 

Community and other non-custodial sentencing of adults – Clause 23 The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for, or in connection with, dealing non-custodially with offenders aged 18 or over.

On 27 March 2012, the Ministry of Justice published a consultation on community sentencing entitled Punishment and Reform: Effective Community Sentences  The consultation seeks views on a set of proposed reforms to the way sentences served in the community operate in England and Wales. The consultation is scheduled to conclude on 22 June 2012.  Clause 23 is designed as a placeholder to allow the Secretary of State for Justice to bring forward amendments in the light of responses to the consultation.

 

Of interest to us are three clauses entitled ‘Border Control’ and these are…

24.       Appeals against refusal of entry clearance to visit the UK

25.       Restriction on right of appeal from within the United Kingdom

26.       Powers of immigration officers

Clause 24 seeks to end the right of appeal for family visitors who are refused entry clearance.  This provision has a long and agonizing history extending back to at least the late 1980’s, and this bill represents about the third flip-flop the government has taken.  Transpondia is inexorably pro-family, and so we have a negative position on this proposed legislation.  But to be honest and fair, we also recognize the mind boggling abuse that has occurred under the family visitor programme.  This provision is both emotive and racially charged and thus likely to be the subject of spirited debate in both houses.

Clause 25 is a bit less contentious.  It seeks to curtail the appeal rights for people who the Secretary of State (i.e., the Home Secretary) believes should not be here because their presence is ‘no longer conducive to the public good’.  This provision is limited to in-country appeals only.

Clause 26 (along with Schedule 5 of the bill) sits somewhere in between Clause 24 and Clause 25 on the emotive scale: it has to do with extending the powers of Immigration Officers.  The drafter of this clause deserves an award in diabolical obfuscation when we observe that the body of the clause itself refers to a mind blowing 11 (yes, count them, eleven) bits and pieces of prior Parliamentary acts.  At the crux of it, one finds this text…

Where an authorised immigration officer has reasonable grounds for suspecting that an immigration offence or nationality offence has been or is being committed, the officer may arrest without warrant any person whom the officer has reasonable grounds for suspecting to be guilty of the offence.

So to make a long story short, this particular clause has to do with civil liberties that Immigration Officer’s might find inconvenient and can thus ignore.   For us, it all seems a bit over the top as measures for busting short-order cooks, waiters, dishwashers, and the occasional prostitute.  Don’t these guys have anything better to do?

Stepping back for a moment to get some perspective, it’s an interesting development to see immigration policy embedded into legislation that is primarily directed towards crime.

 

Amendment of Road Traffic Law – Driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle with concentration of specified controlled drug above specified limitClause 27

The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (“MD Act”) prohibits the production, import, export, possession and supply of “controlled drugs” (subject to regulations made under the MD Act). The definition of the term controlled drugs is set out in section 2 of the MD Act.  However, it is not an offence under the MD Act to have a controlled drug in your body.

Supplementing the above, section 4 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (“the 1988 Act”) makes it a criminal offence to drive, or be in charge of, a mechanically propelled vehicle when under the influence of drink or drugs.

The difficulties involved in proving impairment due to drugs means that section 4 of the 1988 Act is not often used in drug driving cases. While section 5 of the 1988 Act makes it a separate offence to drive or be in charge of a motor vehicle with an alcohol concentration above the prescribed limit, no similar offence exists for drugs.

In December 2009, Sir Peter North CBE QC was appointed by the then Secretary of State for Transport, to conduct an independent review of the law on drink driving and drug driving.  North’s Report of the Review of Drink and Drug Driving Law was published in June 2010 and made a variety of recommendations in regards to drink and drug driving, including that further consideration should be given to introducing a new specific offence of driving or being in charge of a motor vehicle with a concentration of a controlled drug above a specified limit.

Following Sir Peter North CBE QC’s report the Transport Select Committee published, in December 2010, a report on drink and drug driving law . The Committee favoured the adoption of a “zero-tolerance” offence for illegal drugs which are known to impair driving.

The Secretary of State for Transport made a written ministerial statement on 21 March 2011 which announced the publication of the Government’s response to the reports by Sir Peter North CBE QC and the Transport Select Committee on Drink and Drug Driving(CM 8050) – here.   The response endorsed Sir Peter North CBE QC’s recommendation that the case for a new offence relating to drug-driving should be examined further. Clause 27 of the Bill provides for such an offence.

As presently drafted, the offence will apply where a person (D) – (a)  drives or attempts to drive a motor vehicle on a road or otherpublic place, or (b) is in charge of a motor vehicle on a road or other public place, and there is in D’s body a specified controlled drug.

D is guilty of an offence if the proportion of the drug in D’s blood or urine exceeds the specified limit for that drug.

It will be a defence for a person (“D”) charged with an offence under this section to show that – (a) the specified controlled drug had been prescribed or supplied to D for medical or dental purposes, (b) D took the drug in accordance with any directions given by the person by whom the drug was prescribed or supplied, and with any accompanying instructions (so far as consistent with any such directions) given by the manufacturer or distributor of the drug, and (c) D’s possession of the drug immediately before taking it was not unlawful under section 5(1) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (restriction of possession of controlled drugs) because of an exemption in regulations made under section 7 of that Act (authorisation of activities otherwise unlawful under foregoing provisions).

The defence will not be available to D if his actions were – (a) contrary to any advice, given by the person by whom the drug was prescribed or supplied, about the amount of time that should elapse between taking the drug and driving a motor vehicle, or (b) contrary to any accompanying instructions about that matter
(so far as consistent with any such advice) given by the manufacturer or distributor of the drug.

If evidence is adduced that is sufficient to raise an issue with respect to the defence , the court must assume that the defence is satisfied unless the prosecution proves beyond reasonable doubt that it is not.

There is a further defence if D is able to prove that at the time D is alleged to have committed the offence the circumstances were such that there was no likelihood of D driving the vehicle whilst the proportion of the
specified controlled drug in D’s blood or urine remained likely to exceed the specified limit for that drug.

The court may, in determining whether there was such a likelihood, disregard any injury to DSee Department for Transport – Frequently Asked Questions – Drug Driving offence and drug screening devices and any damage to the vehicle.

 

 

What will the Crime and Courts Bill do?

The bill, which contains three parts (the National Crime Agency, courts and justice and miscellaneous and general) will deliver major reforms to the criminal and civil justice systems.

Part one – the National Crime Agency

Provisions in part one include:

  • establishing the National Crime Agency to prevent and investigate serious, organised and complex crime (including the importation/supply of drugs and firearms; human trafficking; sexual abuse; exploitation of children; and tackling cybercrime)

Additional information on Part one of the Crime and Courts Bill

Part two – Courts and Justice

Provisions in Part two include:

  • creating a single county court and single family court to increase the efficiency of the civil and family court systems in England and Wales
  • reforming the judicial appointments process to promote greater transparency and improve judicial diversity
  • introducing flexible judicial deployment to allow judges to move between courts and tribunals
  • increasing the efficiency of fines collection by providing incentives for early payment and compliance, so that, in the event of a default, the offender will be charged the cost incurred for collecting their fine not the taxpayer
  • establishing a specific information sharing gateway that will allow eligibility for certain court and tribunal fee remissions to be checked electronically
  • enabling the introduction, in limited circumstances, of court broadcasting to help demystify the justice system

Additional information on Part two of the Crime and Courts Bill

Part three – Miscellaneous and General

Provisions in Part three include:

  • removing the full appeal right for family visa visit cases and in-country appeal rights from individuals excluded from the UK by the Home Secretary
  • strengthening the powers of immigration officers to tackle serious and organised immigration-related crime
  • introducing a new offence of driving, or being in a charge of, a motor vehicle with concentrations of specified controlled substances in excess of specified levels

Additional information on Part three of the Crime and Courts Bill.

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