The Criminal Rule Procedure Committee Publishes the Outcome on its Invitation to Comment on Draft Rules

Publish date: 13/11/2019

LLG Responded to a specific invitation from the Criminal Rule Procedure Committee to comment on proposals to make rules under the power to be conferred by section 67B(1), (2) of the Courts Act 2003 looking at predominately the exercise of judicial functions by court staff in the courts in which the Criminal Procedure Rules apply. Click to see the report.

Committee_consultation_response_November_2019__1_.doc

1. Between April and July 2019 the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee invited comments on a proposal to make rules under the power to be conferred by section 67B(1), (2) of the Courts Act 2003.[1] In that invitation the Committee described its proposal as one that would maintain substantially the same provision as now for the exercise of judicial functions by court staff in the courts in which the Criminal Procedure Rules apply, with some adjustments (i) to implement one of the recommendations of the President of the Queen's Bench Division's 2015 Review of Efficiency in Criminal Proceedings[2] and (ii) to remove some anomalies in the powers now exercisable by staff in magistrates' courts, but using terminology consistent with other Criminal Procedure Rules and with other contemporary legislation.

Replies received

2. The Committee received 22 replies, for each of which Committee members are grateful and each of which has contributed significantly to the settling of the final draft rules described beneath. Of those replies eight were from bodies representing judges and magistrates (the Council of HM Circuit Judges, the Council of HM District Judges (Magistrates' Courts), the Magistrates' Association, the Magistrates' Leadership Executive and the Magistrates' Engagement Group) and from individual judges, including the Chief Magistrate; nine were from legal advisers and their representative bodies, including the Justices' Clerks' Society and the Public and Commercial Services Union; three were from professional bodies (the Bar Council, the Law Society and Lawyers in Local Government); one was from HM Courts and Tribunals Service; and one was from the Crown Prosecution Service.


LLG specifically wishes to give thanks to the London Regional Criminal Litigation Group led by Neil Allen for their input on these proposals.


[1] Inserted by section 3 of, and paragraph 32 of the Schedule to, the Courts and Tribunals (Judiciary and Functions of Staff) Act 2018. The section provides, '(1) Rules of court may provide for the exercise of relevant judicial functions by persons who (a) are appointed under section 2(1) of this Act or section 40(1) of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, and (b) satisfy any requirements specified in the rules as to qualifications or experience. (2) A person may exercise functions by virtue of subsection (1) only if authorised to do so by the Lord Chief Justice.'

[2] The Review appears at: http://www.judiciary.gov.uk/publications/review-of-efficiency-in-criminal-proceedings-final-report/.