Government announces new measures to improve federal judicial appointment process

Changes include extending the terms of newly appointed Judicial Advisory Committees

Government announces new measures to improve federal judicial appointment process

Minister of Justice and Attorney General Arif Virani has announced the implementation of new measures to make the federal judicial appointments process more efficient.

Key changes announced by Minister Virani include extending the terms of newly appointed Judicial Advisory Committees from two to three years and increasing the validity period of Judicial Advisory Committee assessments for judicial appointment candidates from two to three years.

Extending the terms of these committees to three years ensures that members could serve for longer, decreasing time spent selecting new committee members and allowing each committee to evaluate more candidate files, comparatively, over an extended period. To ensure that the same Judicial Advisory Committee does not assess judicial candidates twice, the validity of judicial candidate assessments will also be for three years.

Judicial Advisory Committees play a fundamental role in the evaluation of judicial applications. They are responsible for screening and assessing the qualifications of candidates applying for federal judicial appointments, ensuring that only the most qualified individuals are recommended.

Minister Virani emphasized that these changes aim to expedite judicial appointments and reduce vacancies resulting from elevations, retirements, resignations and bench members electing supernumerary status. The government seeks to strengthen public confidence in the justice system by maintaining a rigorous evaluation process while enhancing efficiency.

“Canada has one of the most robustly independent and highly regarded judiciaries in the world. That is partly due to the quality of our judicial appointees and their dedication to Canadians. Making Judicial Advisory Committees more efficient will help fill judicial vacancies and strengthen public confidence in the justice system,” Virani said.

There are 17 Judicial Advisory Committees, with each province and territory represented. The judicial application process was established in 2016, following rigorous consultation with the legal and judicial community. This process is aimed at ensuring transparency, merit and the diversity of the Canadian population.

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