Clause 73 - Appeals in small claims cases

Part of Justice (Northern Ireland) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee am 7:30 pm ar 12 Chwefror 2002.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Des Browne Des Browne Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Northern Ireland Office, Parliamentary Secretary (Northern Ireland Office) 7:30, 12 Chwefror 2002

This group of amendments removes an undesirable side effect resulting from changes to the appeals process for small claims cases. The Northern Ireland civil justice reform group recommended that appeals relating to any question of law arising from an award made in a small claims court should go to the Court of Appeal, rather than the High Court. In addition, the group recommended that there should be a right of appeal from a small claims court to a county court on a point of law, regardless of whether an award was made. It was intended that those rights of appeal should be both exhaustive and exclusive. If a party appealed on a point of law to the county court judge and was unsuccessful, he should not attempt to appeal on the same point of law to the Court of Appeal. However, the wording of clause 73(2) as drafted does not fully reflect that intention.

Amendment No. 299 and the two consequential amendments correct that and reflect the reform group's recommendation by preventing an overlap in the appeal routes. I ask that the amendments be made.

Amendment agreed to.

Amendments made: No. 300, in page 62, leave out line 37 and insert '(ab) and (b)'.

No. 301, in page 62, line 39, leave out '(4)(ba)' and insert '(4)(ab)'.—[Mr. Browne.]

Clause 73, as amended ordered to stand part of the Bill.