There are a couple of updates we’d like to bring to your attention from the HMCTS Operation Court Summary that might be helpful.
- This week they will be opening a Nightingale Court in Bolton, which will provide 2 additional courtrooms for Crown Court work from Bolton Crown Court. A full list of all Nightingale Courts can be found on GOV.UK.
- Common Platform is the new digital case management system for HMCTS, the judiciary, and professional court users. By the end of April 2021, it is scheduled to go live in selected courts in the Midlands, Wales, the north-west, the north-east and the south-west. HMCTS are contacting the defence firms and chambers working with these courts and asking them to register their legal practitioners now for user accounts. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/hmcts-common-platform-account-registration-for-defence-professionals
- Following the Lord Chief Justice’s message on recovery (17 March 2021 – https://www.judiciary.uk/announcements/message-from-the-lord-chief-justice-courts-recovery/ ), court lists in magistrates’ courts will be adjusted for those involved in proceedings to attend in person where the court has directed this, in the interests of justice and where it is safe to do so. The safe operation of the courts continues to be HMCTS’ primary consideration and remote hearings still play an integral part in managing footfall in their buildings safely.
- The Crown Court is hearing all types of applications and cases, including multi-hander trials. Where appropriate, judges continue to deal with a range of work remotely, including sentencing hearings.