The National Audit Office have warned that law chiefs will fail to complete their digital courts revolution in time and on budget. It says HM Courts & Tribunals Services faces a ‘daunting challenge’ in meeting target for technological and cultural change.
The Ministry of Justice wants to vastly reduce the number of physical court hearings, cut its workforce by roughly 50% and introduce national centres to handle all centralised case management and administration. The six-year project is due to be completed in 2022.
The NAO notes that the government has already extended the original completion date by two years with no change in the £1.2bn budget.
The report says: ‘HMCTS faces a daunting challenge in delivering the scale of technological and cultural change necessary to modernise the administration of justice, and achieve the savings required. It has responded to early concerns by extending the timetable and improving its governance and programm management. But there is a long way to go to achieve the planned transformation and overall HMCTS is behind where it expected to be at this stage.’
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