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Courts Act 2003, Cross Heading: Provisions relating to Northern Ireland is up to date with all changes known to be in force on or before 15 October 2019. There are changes that may be brought into force at a future date. Changes that have been made appear in the content and are referenced with annotations. Help about Changes to Legislation

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Provisions relating to Northern IrelandU.K.

102Power to alter judicial titles: Northern IrelandU.K.

(1)The Lord Chancellor may by order—

(a)alter the name of any of the offices of the [F1Court of Judicature] of Northern Ireland or of the county courts [F2or magistrates' courts] in Northern Ireland which are listed in subsection (2);

(b)provide for or alter the way in which the holders of any of those offices are to be styled.

(2)The offices are—

  • County court judge

  • Deputy judge of the county court

  • [F3Deputy resident magistrate]

  • District Judge

  • Judge of the Court of Appeal

  • Lord Chief Justice

  • Master (Bankruptcy)

  • Master (Care and Protection)

  • Master (Chancery)

  • Master (Enforcement of Judgments)

  • Master (High Court)

  • Master (Probate and Matrimonial)

  • Master (Queen’s Bench and Appeals)

  • Master (Taxing Office)

  • Presiding judge for the county courts

  • [F4Presiding resident magistrate]

  • Puisne judge of the High Court.

  • [F5Resident magistrate]

(3)The Lord Chancellor may also by order provide for or alter the way in which deputies or temporary additional officers appointed under section 74(1) of the 1978 Act are to be styled.

(4)F6. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(5)An order under this section may make such provision as the Lord Chancellor considers necessary in consequence of any provision made under subsection (1) or (3).

(6)The provision that may be made under subsection (5) includes provision amending, repealing or revoking any enactment.

[F7(6A)The Lord Chancellor may make an order under this section only with the concurrence of the Lord Chief Justice.

(6B)The Lord Chief Justice may nominate any of the following to exercise his functions under subsection (6A)—

(a)the holder of one of the offices listed in Schedule 1 to the Justice (Northern Ireland) Act 2002;

(b)a Lord Justice of Appeal (as defined in section 88 of that Act).]

(7)The power to make an order under this section is exercisable by statutory rule for the purposes of the Statutory Rules (Northern Ireland) Order 1979 (S.I. 1979/1573 (N.I. 12)).

(8)An order under this section is subject to [F8negative resolution (within the meaning of section 41(6) of the Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954)].

(9)The 1978 Act” means the Judicature (Northern Ireland) Act 1978 (c. 23).

Textual Amendments

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

103Official Solicitor of Northern IrelandU.K.

(1)In Schedule 3 to the 1978 Act (statutory offices) the entry relating to the Official Solicitor ceases to have effect.

(2)Amend section 75 of the 1978 Act (Official Solicitor) as follows.

(3)For subsection (1) substitute—

(1)The Lord Chancellor, after consultation with the Lord Chief Justice, may appoint as Official Solicitor to the Supreme Court a person who is—

(a)a solicitor of the Supreme Court of at least 7 years' standing, or

(b)a member of the Bar of Northern Ireland of at least 7 years' standing.

(4)After subsection (5) insert—

(6)The Official Solicitor shall hold and vacate office in accordance with the terms of his appointment (which may include provision about retirement, dismissal or resignation).

(7)The Lord Chancellor may pay to the Official Solicitor such remuneration and allowances as the Lord Chancellor may determine with the consent of the Treasury.

(8)Service as the Official Solicitor is employment in the civil service of the State for the purposes of section 1 of the Superannuation Act 1972 (Principal Civil Service Pension Scheme).

(9)While the office of Official Solicitor is vacant or the Official Solicitor is unable or unwilling to act, the Lord Chancellor may, after consultation with the Lord Chief Justice, appoint a person as temporary Official Solicitor; and the temporary Official Solicitor—

(a)may be appointed only if qualified for appointment as Official Solicitor,

(b)shall have all the powers and duties of the Official Solicitor, and

(c)may be paid remuneration and allowances by the Lord Chancellor with the consent of the Treasury.

(5)In section 68 of the 1978 Act ([F9Senior Courts]: departments)—

(a)in subsection (2)(b) for “statutory officer” substitute “ officer ”, and

(b)for subsection (4) substitute—

(4)The officer supervising a department shall discharge his functions in accordance with directions given by the Lord Chancellor.

(6)In section 73 of the 1978 Act (restrictions on practice) subsection (2) (and the words “Subject to subsection (2),”) cease to have effect.

(7)In section 76 of the 1978 Act (property) paragraph (c) (which referred to the Official Solicitor and which ceased to have effect by virtue of the Supreme Court (Departments and Officers) (Northern Ireland) Order 1982 (S.R. 1982/ 300)) shall again have effect.

(8)Nothing in this section has any effect in relation to the person who on the commencement of this section holds the office in Northern Ireland of Official Solicitor to the [F10Court of Judicature].

104Alteration of place fixed for Crown Court trial: Northern IrelandU.K.

An application under section 48(3) of the 1978 Act (application for variation of place fixed for Crown Court trial) is no longer required to be heard in open court; and accordingly section 48(4) of the 1978 Act ceases to have effect.

105Extension of time for criminal appeals to House of Lords: Northern IrelandU.K.

(1)Amend paragraph 1 of Schedule 1 to the 1978 Act (applications for leave to appeal to House of Lords in certain criminal matters) as follows.

(2)In sub-paragraph (1)—

(a)for “fourteen” (in both places) substitute “ 28 ”, and

(b)for “date of the decision of that court” substitute “ relevant date ”.

(3)After sub-paragraph (1) insert—

(1A)In sub-paragraph (1), “the relevant date” means—

(a)the date of the decision of the court below, or

(b)if later, the date on which that court gives reasons for its decision.

(4)Amend section 32 of the Criminal Appeal (Northern Ireland) Act 1980 (c. 47) (applications for leave to appeal to the House of Lords) as follows.

(5)In subsection (1)—

(a)for “fourteen” (in both places) substitute “ 28 ”, and

(b)for “date of the decision of the Court” substitute “ relevant date ”.

(6)After subsection (1) insert—

(1A)In subsection (1), “the relevant date” means—

(a)the date of the Court of Appeal’s decision, or

(b)if later, the date on which the Court gives reasons for its decision.

106Fees: Northern IrelandU.K.

In section 116 of the 1978 Act (fees) after subsection (1) insert—

(1A)Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), an order under that subsection may make provision for exemptions from fees and remission of fees (in whole or in part).

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