Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Questions (341)

Michael McGrath

Question:

341. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when the sections of the Judicial Council Act 2019 in relation to the establishment of a judicial council and a personal injuries committee will be commenced; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [44976/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy will be aware, the Judicial Council Bill was enacted on 23 July 2019. This is a major landmark piece of reforming legislation which provides for the establishment, for the first time, of a Judicial Council comprising all members of the judiciary. The primary function of the Council will be to promote and maintain excellence in the exercise by judges of their judicial functions and high standards of conduct among judges. The Board of the Council will be responsible for carrying out the functions of the Council on a day-to-day basis.

I envisage that the Judicial Council will be established by the end of this year and a great deal of work is underway to facilitate establishment within that time frame. As I am sure the Deputy will appreciate, it is important to establish the Council and its committees in a legally robust manner. These timelines are challenging but are on track to be met.

Committees of the Judicial Council will be established by the Council having regard to the timelines set out in the Judicial Council Act 2019. The Personal Injuries Guidelines Committee is to be established no later than 3 months after the first meeting of the Judicial Council itself, and that Committee is to meet no later than one month after its establishment. The Personal Injuries Guidelines Committee will be responsible for drawing up personal injuries guidelines for adoption by the Council.