Court staff say a £300million IT system is “endangering the judiciary” because the “fundamentally flawed” software is causing vital information to disappear or change.
Legal advisors have warned that the Common Platform system is allegedly changing information about cases, such as pleas and outcomes.
A court clerk tells the BBC their shock when they realized that a driving ban that had been entered correctly in the system had changed.
The magistrates’ legal counsel, James, said so BBC The file from Radio 4 on 4 Programs that he put in a man’s driving ban on the Common Platform, but when he accessed it later it had changed.
Legal advisors have warned that the Common Platform system is allegedly changing information about cases, such as pleas and outcomes. (Picture from a picture agency)
He told the BBC: “The results that appeared on the shared platform were not the results that we imposed.
‘It’s a good thing we remembered the case, otherwise it would have been overlooked.
“It’s scary because that person would not have been disqualified, they would have been on the street – a threat to others.”
The government has insisted there is no evidence the judiciary is being undermined, but some court officials have branded the IT system as “fundamentally flawed”.
Other employees have warned of instances where information has disappeared from the system, such as B. Causes of Action and Case Results.
The File on 4 program reports that there was another case where a system glitch forced a person to stay in jail for days longer than they should have.
The Common Platform was rolled out to 136 courts in England and Wales in 2020 after being developed to replace outdated software.
The other 40 percent of courts that don’t currently use Common Platform are expected to start early next year.
Common Platform gives judges, attorneys, the CPS and courts the ability to access case information in one place.
The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) Union said warnings about the IT system and its failures were ignored by the court service.
Legal advisers and court staff will wage a labor dispute from September 10-18 over the use of the shared platform.
Some court officials voted to go on strike over the shared platform’s “fundamentally flawed” IT system. (Picture from a picture agency)
The PCS Union said the strike was due to the court service’s failure to address the “adverse effects of the system on the health, safety and welfare of members”.
They have also blasted the further rollout of Common Platform, saying the Courts Service has been ‘gassing’ members over the success of the £300m project.
A spokesman for HM Courts and Tribunal Service said: “The common platform is fundamental to modernizing the court system – replacing outdated systems that are no longer fit for purpose and freeing court staff to do the work to which it can bring the most added value .
“It has successfully managed over 158,000 criminal cases and there is no evidence that the Joint Platform endangers justice or endangers parties.
“We will continue to work closely with staff to assist them in this transition and would like to thank all judges, court staff and others who helped shape and execute it.”
Criminal bar association (CBA), which represents lawyers in England and Wales, outside the Old Bailey in central London, in June on the first of several days of court strikes by CBA members over funding for legal aid
The courts have been plagued by backlogs due to the pandemic, with some victims waiting up to five years for a court date.
The backlog of trials in the Crown Court stood at 58,271 in April this year and recently Justice Secretary Dominic Raab has accused solicitor-managed industrial action to deepen this further.
Members of the Criminal Bar Association (CBA) have staged strikes every two weeks and voted for an indefinite, continuous strike.
Figures from the Justice Department show that more than 6,000 court hearings have been disrupted by the dispute over the terms and fees set by the government for legal counsel’s work.