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Courts Act 2003

Civil Procedure Rules

Section 82: Civil Procedure Rules

197.This section amends the Civil Procedure Act 1997 (CPA 1997) to ensure that if the Lord Chancellor alters draft Civil Procedure Rules he observes the general objectives of fairness and simplicity.

Section 83: Civil Procedure Rule Committee

198.This section reflects the fact that statutory backing has been given to the posts of Head and Deputy Head of Civil Justice under section 62.  The two holders of the posts will be ex officio members of the Civil PRC and the post of Vice-Chancellor is to be removed as an ex officio member of the Committee.

199.There are to be changes to the lay membership of the committee to allow for two members with experience in and knowledge of consumer affairs, or the lay advice sector, or both, rather than the current requirement of one from each. This reflects the fact that experience has shown difficulty in finding suitable members to meet the requirements. The Lord Chancellor is also to have the power to amend the composition of the Committee after consultation with the Master of the Rolls, Head of Civil Justice and the Deputy Head of Civil Justice (when appointed).

Section 84: Power to change certain requirements relating to Committee

200.This section allows the Lord Chancellor to amend the composition of the Committee after consultation with the Head and Deputy Head of Civil Justice and the Master of the Rolls. This power to amend the composition of the Committee is to extend only to the class of appointed members. The Committee retains its existing power to co-opt those with specialist expertise in the formulation of particular rules. Such co-optees are not members of the Committee.

Section 85: Process for making Civil Procedure Rules

201.The Civil Procedure Rules, created under the CPA 1997, govern the practice and procedure of the civil division of the Court of Appeal, the High Court and the county courts.

202.This section makes minor amendments to the CPA 1997 by providing for the Lord Chancellor to allow, disallow or alter rules made by the Committee. Before altering rules the Lord Chancellor must consult the committee. Altered rules will be subject to the affirmative resolution procedure in Parliament to allow democratic scrutiny of the exercise of this power by the Lord Chancellor. Those rules which are allowed by the Lord Chancellor without alteration will continue to follow the negative resolution procedure.

Part 8: Miscellaneous.Summary

203.This part contains provisions relating to criminal and civil procedure, appeals, court fees, periodical payment for personal injury and minor amendments to judicial posts in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

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