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HMCTS publishes protocol for sharing court lists

New protocol published

24 July 2020
HMCTS publishes protocol for sharing court lists

Changes made to the Criminal Procedure Rules on 6 April 2020 (Rule 5.8(5)) allow the Lord Chancellor to authorise new means of providing information about criminal cases upon request. HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) can now provide full court lists to a number of professionals working in the courts who were previously refused access, following the introduction of the Data Protection Act 2018. This protocol was developed following engagement with solicitors, and in consultation with NHS England, and is intended to assist HMCTS staff to deliver the best service to professional court users needing to access court lists. Court officers in magistrates’ courts may therefore provide copies of standard court lists, and information contained within these relating to individual defendants, to the following parties:

  • Duty solicitors on rota
  • National Probation Service officers
  • Youth Offending Team officers
  • Recognised Independent Domestic Violence Advisers
  • Recognised Independent Sexual Violence Advisers
  • Witness support volunteers, if working for a recognised witness support body (this is currently Citizens Advice)
  • Health and social care practitioners working for a recognised service provider supporting defendants in the following areas: mental health, vulnerabilities, alcohol and drug dependency and physical health and wellbeing (eg liaison and diversion services, community sentence treatment requirement services, or criminal courts custory healthcare services)
  • Other volunteers or professionals who in the judgement of a court officer of Band B and above (administrative) or Band A and above (legal), provide like services to the above

This protocol document also sets out the ways in which HMCTS staff must provide the information, and includes a disclaimer which must be included in any email communications for this purpose. It also sets out the duty of recipients for how information received must be handled, in line with the Data Protection Act 2018.

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