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There are 3 key reasons for considering a merger of the current 8 LJAs:
- to improve the effectiveness of the delivery of justice by improving flexibility in dealing with cases
- to make better use of reduced resources
- to increase the opportunities for magistrates to retain experience and thus competence
The Judicial Business Group (JBG) must address the question of magistrates’ sittings against the background of falling court sittings in criminal jurisdiction.
The JBG must also consider the resources available to HMCTS and criminal justice agencies to ensure that justice can be delivered as effectively as possible with reduced resources.
Staffing within HMCTS and other organisations is determined by the workload and has therefore reduced over recent years.