§ 2. Sir J. Lucas
asked the Attorney-General if he is aware that Mr. A. Hayes, 73, Cumberland Road, Southsea, applied to the Secretary, Poor Persons Department, Southampton, for a divorce nine years ago and is still waiting, although his case has been approved as eligible; and, in view of the man's age and other circumstances, what action is being taken to expedite the case.
§ The Attorney-General
As my hon. Friend knows, Poor Persons Rules require an applicant for a certificate to proceed as a poor person to satisfy the Poor Persons Committee that he has reasonable grounds for taking, defending or being a party to the proceedings in question. In this unfortunate case, delays, mainly due to the war, occurred in the early stages, and a provisional certificate was not issued by the Poor Persons Committee to Mr. Hayes until December, 1942. Subsequently, however, the Committee were satisfied that Mr. Hayes, on the evidence then available, had not aprima facie case for initiating proceedings, and Mr. Hayes was so informed by the Committee. The case was, therefore, not proceeded with.