Delay by Secretary of State in determining compensation

15.—(1) Subject to paragraph (2), if, on an application made in accordance with county court rules by an applicant, a county court considers, having regard to all the circumstances—

(a)that the Secretary of State has had sufficient information to enable him to determine the applicant’s application for compensation; but

(b)that the Secretary of State has not determined the application within such period after he received or obtained that information as is reasonable, the court may make a declaration to that effect.

(2) An applicant shall not make an application under paragraph (1) until—

(a)after the expiration of 6 months beginning with the date of his application for compensation; and

(b)after the expiration of one month beginning with the date of the service on the Secretary of State by him of a notice of his intention to make an application under this Article.

(3) The county court shall, before making a declaration under paragraph (1) afford to the Secretary of State an opportunity of being heard.

(4) Where—

(a)a county court makes a declaration under paragraph (1); and

(b)the Secretary of State does not, within 2 months after the date of that declaration, determine the application for compensation to which the declaration relates, the Secretary of State shall be deemed to have determined that no compensation is payable in pursuance of the application and to have served on the applicant a notice to that effect under Article 12(1).