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Constitutional Reform Act 2005

Section 138 and Schedule 16: Judicial Committee of the Privy Council

366.Section 138 introduces Schedule 16 which amends various statutory provisions to remove the right of the Lord President of the Council to be a member of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, and to sit judicially. Paragraph 2 of that Schedule recasts section 1 of the Judicial Committee Act of 1833 to redefine the membership of the Judicial Committee. This has the effect of removing not only the Lord President, but also the Lord Chancellor, Lord Keeper and Commissioners of the Great Seal. It also removes the (now in practice obsolete) power to appoint to the Judicial Committee other members of the Privy Council who do not fulfil the statutory requirements. Members of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council from the United Kingdom will in future be only those Privy Councillors who have held high judicial office as defined by Part 3 of the present Act (The Supreme Court). This will include judges of the new United Kingdom Supreme Court. Other enactments also provide for certain Commonwealth judges to be members of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. These judges’ membership of the Judicial Committee is maintained Paragraph 3 of the Schedule requires the appointment of the registrar of the Judicial Committee to be made only after consultation with the President of the Supreme Court.

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