Sir James Munby retires as President of the Family Division having had an undeniable impact on family justice reform. Stepping into the role at a time of unprecedented change, Sir James has not shied away from the difficulties of the role, often under the harsh spotlight of media attention.
Shortly after commencing his term as President, Sir James very notably challenged the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) on the impact of legal aid cuts on access to justice. Although the argument had been made by many, including the Law Society, his public request to the MoJ rightly illustrated the human impact of the policy.
And, happily for the profession, Sir James did not stop there. In his tenure as President he has drawn the public’s attention to the crisis facing the courts through the increase in litigants in person, cuts to welfare and health spending, as well as the issues caused by outdated IT systems throughout the court estate.