Lord Chief Justice takes stock in pre-retirement report
September 11, 2017 1 comment
Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas has published his final annual report a few weeks before he is due to retire.
The report cites a sharp rise in demand for ‘public law’ – i.e. cases concerning the relationship between individuals and the state: typically (but not exclusively) fostering and adoption. There has also been a fall in care cases sparked by fears of radicalisation he adds.
The legal veteran also notes upcoming changes to family law, such as the removal of the current right held by those accused of domestic violence to cross-examine their accusers in court. In addition, the government has committed to introducing new protections for vulnerable witnesses in family court, to match those applied in criminal hearings.
His final year in office had been the most difficult he wrote, describing Brexit as “one of the most complex and difficult issues our country has faced in peacetime”.
The report also offers thoughts on the protection of access to justice and the importance of maintaining the independence of the judiciary.
The 69 year-old has been Lord Chief Justice since 2013 and will be succeeded by Sir Ian Burnett. Lord Thomas previously served as President of the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court.
You can read his final report here.
Photo by Ben Sutherland via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence.
September 11, 2017
Categories: Family Law