The government has revealed plans to curb public sector payoffs at £95,000, a move that could have implications for judges in England and Wales, as well as in-house lawyers.
In a consultation response published today, the Treasury said it would ‘end six-figure payments’ for redundancy and other exit payments.
Although members of the judiciary cannot be made redundant there are occasions when compensation can be paid if offices are abolished – though the amount cannot exceed a lump sun equivalent to annual salary or accrued pension.
The lord chancellor also has discretion to compensate individuals who leave the Immigration Tribunal.
However, according to the government, where employers offer voluntary exit packages that are not treated as redundancies there ‘may be a case’ for applying a different maximum.
The government received 350 responses to its proposals, which it says will save £250m a year, of which ‘many were opposed to reform’.
Earlier this month, the Gazette reported that the Ministry of Justice had proposed various reforms as part of a consultation called ‘Transforming our Justice System’.
The consultation proposed a mandatory retirement notice period for all judges – both salaried and fee-paid. Under the proposals, judges would have to give options of three, six and 12 months.
The government said it expects to roll out the new curbs within nine months.