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Constitutional Reform Act 2005

Section 36: Medical Retirement

142.This section makes provision analogous to that for other senior judicial office holders for vacation of the office of a judge of the Supreme Court (including the President and Deputy President) on medical grounds.

143.Subsection (1) provides for the scope of the section: it applies if the Lord Chancellor is satisfied by means of a medical certificate that the person holding office as a judge of the Supreme Court is both disabled by permanent infirmity from performing his duties and for the time being is incapacitated from resigning from his office.

144.In such circumstances, subsection (2) enables the Lord Chancellor to declare the office of the person in question to be vacated (subject to the conditions in subsection (4)). Subsection (3) provides for this declaration to have effect as though the person in question had himself or herself resigned on the date of the declaration. Subsection (4) requires the Lord Chancellor, before making a declaration, to secure the agreement of the appropriate judges of the Supreme Court (depending on the office which would be vacated). Without that agreement, the declaration will have no effect. In the case of an ordinary judge (as defined in section 60(3)(a)), the agreement required is that of the President and Deputy President of the Court; in the case of the President, the agreement required is that of the Deputy President and the senior ordinary judge (as defined in section 60(3)(b)); and in the case of the Deputy President, the agreement required is that of the President and the senior ordinary judge.

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