HC Deb 05 June 1947 vol 438 cc358-9

Terms of Reference

1. To inquire into the present practice and procedure of the Supreme Court (excluding the practice and procedure in actions for the infringement of patents and under the Patents and Designs Acts, 1907 to 1946, and in matrimonial proceedings in the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Division of the High Court, but including the practice and procedure on appeals from that Division), and to consider what reforms of such practice and procedure should now be introduced, whether by legislation or otherwise, for the purposes of reducing the cost of litigation and securing greater efficiency and expedition in the despatch of business.

2. To consider the Reports made by the Hanworth Committee on the business of the Courts (Cmds. 4265, 4471 and 5066) and the Report of the Royal Commission on the Despatch of Business at Common Law, 1934–6 (Cmd. 5065), and, for the purposes set out in the foregoing paragraph, to make recommendations generally on the proposals contained in those Reports.

3. To consider, for the purposes aforesaid, whether any and if so what, modifications should now be made in the present rights of appeal to, from or within the Supreme Court, other than appeals in matrimonial proceedings from courts of summary jurisdiction.

4. To consider what appropriate machinery might be evolved to enable cases involving points of law of exceptional public interest (arising in any Division of the High Court or in the Court of Appeal) to be determined wholly or partly at the public expense, whether by making the Attorney-General or the King's Proctor a party to litigation or otherwise.

5. To make interim reports on any matter or matters arising out of their terms of reference as may from time to time appear to the Committee to merit immediate attention or to warrant separate treatment.

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