The Government has recently confirmed that it is to delay implementation of the Jackson reforms until April 2013.
Over the past few years we have been reporting on the recommendations made by Lord Justice Jackson on ways of reducing the costs of civil litigation and of increasing access to justice. In our November 2011 note, we explained the extent to which the Government had implemented or would be implementing these proposals into law.
At that stage, the intention was that the majority of the changes (contained in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill which is currently going through Parliament) would be in place by 1 October this year. However, during the House of Lords committee stage debate on the Bill, the Liberal Democrat peer, Lord Wallace, announced that implementation would be delayed by six months. This was in order to give the Government sufficient time to get right the complex and interrelated details of the required changes to legislation. This would also, Lord Wallace noted, give legal businesses enough time to plan for the changes.
We will provide a further update when Parliament has completed its scrutiny of the Bill later this year.