There are 524,000 magistrates’ and Crown courts waiting to be heard in the UK. With each day that passes, the statistic is growing and the wait for justice is increasing.
On average, case completion now takes 511 days, an increase of 120 days just 10 years ago.
The impact of COVID-19
Coronavirus has only exacerbated this huge challenge for the British legal system. James Mulholland QC, chair of the Criminal Bar Association, acknowledges that there were 9,262 trials vacated between mid-March and the 26th July 2020 alone. Barristers warn that such phenomenal delays will have a direct impact on the well-being of victims.
Why the delay?
Enhanced social distancing measures, and the logistics surrounding organising an efficient, COVID-secure court have caused delays across the legal system. Court managers are finding it difficult to locate spaces to effectively house all those involved in the proceedings. And safety measures, such as the installation of acrylic screens, have proved time consuming.
But many in the legal profession argue that inefficiencies within the system existed prior to the pandemic.
COVID not to blame
Coronavirus has weakened an already underfunded system.
Over the last decade, cuts to court budgets have affected how many cases can be heard, and how regularly. As the number of sitting days has fallen, the court waiting list has continued to grow.
The government have announced a plan which aims to tackle the delays. The Ministry of Justice intend to appoint a further 1,600 court staff to help address the problem.
But barristers want more. Even high-profile professionals are speaking out about the injustices present within the current system. Just last week, Judge Keith Raynor refused to extend the custody period for a defendant who had been waiting 321 days for his case to be heard. Judge Raynor argues that the government’s measures are slow and lack funding.
Don’t give up
If you are about to embark upon court proceedings, the prospect of such delays can be overwhelming. But before you throw in the towel, and give up on justice, know that there is another option.
Many of our clients believe that taking debtors to court is the only way to get their money back. So they consider writing off debts, knowing that they just can’t waste another second on their debtor.
But you don’t have to wait. And you don’t have to let them win.
Cobra Financial Solutions are here to take the stress away from debt collection. We deal with your debtor, so that you don’t have to. With our 5* Trustpilot rating, and hundreds of verified customer reviews, trust the UK’s number 1 debt collection agency to get your money back.
No drawn-out wait for justice. No mounds of paperwork. No solicitors. No stress.
Just your money back in your pocket, where it belongs.
If you’d like to discuss your case, then call one of the Cobra team on 0151 526 4222.