What are the limits of judicial independence?
The Rt Hon Lord Falconer of Thoroton PC QC
Former Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
Professor Graham Gee
University of Sheffield and Policy Exchange’s Judicial Power Project
The Hon Dyson Heydon AC QC
Former Justice of the High Court of Australia
The Rt Hon Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd PC QC
Former Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales
Professor of Law, Queen Mary University of London
The expansion of judicial power has gone hand-in-hand with a greater emphasis on judicial independence. The more that judges hold those who exercise political power to account, the greater the emphasis placed on ensuring that judges are equipped—individually and institutionally—to resolve politically sensitive disputes impartially, according to law and free from improper pressure. But there is a risk that the notion of judicial independence will become inflated, squeezing out for example legitimate political criticism of judicial decisions. This seminar explores the definition and proper limits of judicial independence.