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HMCTS pilot to improve notifications to police

20 July 2018

From Monday 23 July 2018, HMCTS will be piloting a new procedure designed to improve notification to the police when a court makes a FGM or forced marriage protection order.

Applicants (or bailiffs on behalf of the court where an applicant in person) are required to serve the order on the respondent within two days of the order being made by the court. A certificate of service must be submitted to the court by the applicant or bailiff within 7 days of service on the respondent. If the court has not received a certificate of service within the anticipated time frame, HMCTS will refer the file to a judge to consider what further order, if any, is required. Further, applicants will be required to notify the police through a centralised email address within two days of the respondent being served with the order. Where service has been effected by the court, the court must serve the order on the centralised police email address within one working day of receipt of the certificate of service from the court bailiff.

It is hoped that these changes to the service procedure will improve notification of such orders to the police, giving the police the opportunity to implement appropriate safeguarding strategies to enable vulnerable persons to be protected as early as possible.

The pilot will run nationally for six months, coming into effect on Monday 23 July 2018 and concluding on Friday 25 January 2019. See Practice Direction 36H (PDF 351kb) for further details. The practice direction will be made available on the Justice website from Monday 23 July 2018.

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