Judicial Council Bill expected to clear Oireachtas today

Judicial Council Bill expected to clear Oireachtas today

Charlie Flanagan

The Judicial Council Bill is expected to clear the Oireachtas today after it returns to the Seanad for a final vote.

The landmark bill, which was introduced in 2017, was passed by the Dáil with amendments last Thursday.

One of the key functions of the bill will be to promote and maintain excellence in the exercise by judges of their judicial functions. The Judicial Council will provide for further education and training of judges as well as matters pertaining to discipline.

Additionally, the establishment of a sentencing and guidelines information committee under the bill will help provide for greater consistency in the imposition of sentences in criminal cases

The Council will also have a key role in preparing guidelines for appropriate general damages for various types of personal injuries through the establishment of a personal injuries guidelines committee, addressing a key recommendation of the Personal Injuries Commission.

Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan said: “A legal system needs more than good facilities and a professional courts service. It must operate in a way that is fit for purpose. The Judicial Council Bill will play an important role in this regard.

“We now need to proceed with the implementation of this important work and I trust that this can begin in earnest in cooperation with the judiciary following the enactment of the Judicial Council Bill.”

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