Appointment of the inaugural Vice-President of the Unified Tribunals

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The Senior President of Tribunals, Sir Ernest Ryder, is delighted to announce the appointment of Lord Justice Lindblom as the inaugural Vice-President of the Unified Tribunals. The new Vice-President will serve for an initial term of three years.

The role of the Vice-President will be to deputise for and support the Senior President across his judicial leadership responsibilities. Among other things, the Vice-President will have as their primary responsibilities:

  • the development of the judicial leadership framework for the Upper Tribunal and Employment Appeal Tribunal;
  • coordination and oversight of statutory consultation responses about judicial appointments for which the Senior President is responsible;
  • development of cross-deployment and assignment policies in parallel with those applicable in the courts; and
  • support for the SPT in particular in relation to tribunal reform in England and Wales and its implications for process and ways of working across the United Kingdom.

In addition to his appointment as Vice-President, the Senior President of Tribunals has also appointed Lord Justice Lindblom as the Acting Chamber President for the Upper Tribunal’s Administrative Appeals Chamber. This interim appointment, envisaged to last for a period of no longer than twelve months, follows the retirement in February of Mr Justice Charles.

Notes to the Editor:

  1. The Rt. Hon. Sir Keith John Lindblom was called to the Bar in 1980 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1996, a recorder in 2001 and a deputy High Court judge in 2009. He was appointed as a judge of the High Court in 2010. In January 2013 he was appointed President of the Upper Tribunal Lands Chamber, in April 2014 he was appointed as lead judge of the Planning Court. In November 2015 he was appointed a judge of the Court of Appeal, where he is the Supervising Lord Justice for Planning.
  2. The unified tribunals system has jurisdiction across the United Kingdom, and is established under the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007. There are approximately five and a half thousand Judicial Office Holders (both judges and specialist/professional members) sitting in the First-tier Tribunal, the Employment Tribunals, the Upper Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal. The Senior President of Tribunals presides over the unified tribunals, supported by fourteen jurisdictional Presidents in each of the respective first-instance and appellate Chambers and Tribunals. The Senior President’s leadership responsibilities extend to welfare, guidance and training; to appointments, deployment/assignment and allocation; to conduct and discipline; and to managing relations with the UK and devolved Governments and Legislatures in respect of matters relating to the administration of justice or otherwise of relevance to the tribunals judiciary. The Senior President is also a principal under the HMCTS framework partnership, together with the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice (E&W), and sits on the HMCTS Board as a judicial director, and so has responsibilities for the leadership of the tribunals administration. In carrying out his functions, the Senior President is required to have regard to system accessibility; to procedural fairness, swiftness and efficiency; to ensuring appropriate jurisdictional subject-matter expertise across the Chamber and Tribunals; and to promoting innovation in methods of dispute resolution.
  3. The appointment as Acting Chamber President is made by the Senior President of Tribunals under Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, section 7 and Schedule 4, paragraph 6(1).
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