MPs launch probe into worsening court delays

The Justice Committee chaired by Bob Neill will look at why county courts are so jammed up, and what can be done to ease the pressure.


MPs are to examine the logjams in county courts which cause landlords who want to evict so many problems.

The Justice Committee is to look at what can be done to ease the pressure on courts as delays continue to get worse.

An inquiry into court delays comes as the Government put the planned abolition of Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions on hold. It was taken out of the Renters (Reform) Bill at the last minute before its second reading in Parliament last week.

Any decision to abandon Section 21 evictions is dependent on improvements to the time taken by courts to deal with cases, the Government says.

Court delays are even longer than last year, according to the Civil Justice Statistics Quarterly released in September.

The committee will consider what is causing the delays, such as staffing issues, and what changes are needed.

Worsening situation

Bob Neill, chair of the Justice Committee (main picture), says: “The Justice Committee has held long-standing concerns over the resourcing and capacity of the county court and made strong recommendations to this effect in its 2022 report.

The work of the county court shouldn’t be the Cinderella of the justice system.”

“More than a year on, claims data shows the situation is worsening not improving and it’s right the Committee examines this deterioration and takes evidence from those impacted by delays, staffing levels, access, as well as other issues,” he says.

“The work of the county court shouldn’t be the Cinderella of the justice system. It affects a significant proportion of the public, who rely on it to deliver justice.”

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