Judges to press ahead with NI legal reforms

Lord Chief Justice Declan Morgan and colleagues were to brief political parties on legal reforms. Photo: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
Lord Chief Justice Declan Morgan and colleagues were to brief political parties on legal reforms. Photo: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press

The Lord Chief Justice and other judges are to press ahead with reforms in the legal system, despite the absence of an Assembly.

The judges planned to brief the five main political parties today on reforms and developments across criminal, civil and legacy business.

Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan and others said they briefed the parties on a wide range of matters, including Problem Solving Justice; Sentencing; Legacy Inquests; Courtroom technology and digital reforms; Vulnerable Witnesses and Victims; Civil Justice; Commercial Court Reforms; Family Justice; and media in court.

Sir Declan said: “In the absence of a Justice Committee and a functioning Assembly, I have endeavoured to engage with political parties and I am delighted to welcome representatives from the main political parties today here to the High Court.

“Despite there being no functioning Assembly, where possible, and where appropriate, Judges have taken the initiative to introduce reforms on a wide range of issues relating to the justice system.”

He added that they were happy to discuss these reforms with the political parties, and also to highlight areas where they consider reforms are not possible due to the need for primary legislation.