HC Deb 17 April 1907 vol 172 cc946-7

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he can give a list of the posts on the Chancery side of the High Court in Ireland above the rank of first-class clerk for which statute requires that the occupants thereof shall have professional qualifications, and also a list of those for which statute does not require such qualifications.

(Answered by Mr. Birrell.) The Lord Chancellor informs me as follows:—Professional qualification is required by statute for the holding of the following offices, viz.:—Taxing Masters; chief clerks to the Lord Chancellor; chief clerks to the Masters of the Rolls; chief clerks to Mr. Justice Barton; Examiners and registrars in the Land Judge's Department. In some of these cases an alternative qualification of a number of years previous service in the Department is allowed. No statutable qualification is required for the holding of the offices of—Clerk of the Crown and Hanaper; registrars to the Lord Chancellor, the Master of the Bolls, and Mr. Justice Barton; Accountant-General; clerks of Judgments, Records and Writs. Legal attainments, however, are necessary for the proper discharge of the duties of these offices, and for a very long period the Clerks of the Crown and Hanaper, the Accountants-General, and the Clerks of Records and Writs have been either barristers or solicitors. The Chancery registrars were formerly appointed from the staff of the office, and had statutory rights of promotion, but the statute allowing this was repealed in 1867. Professional qualification, though not actually required by statute, is deemed necessary for the proper discharge of the duties of that office.