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Lady Hale, 'pioneer' retires from Supreme Court

Date:16 JAN 2020
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Lady Hale, the first female justice, has retired.

Hailed as the Beyoncé of the legal profession,  Lady Hale was one of only six women out of one hundred studying law when she attended University, and graduated with the only starred First degree.

After graduating from Cambridge in 1966, she taught law at Manchester University from 1966 to 1984, also qualifying as a barrister and practising for a while at the Manchester Bar. She specialised in Family and Social Welfare law, was founding editor of the Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law, and authored a pioneering case book on 'The Family, Law and Society'.

In 1984 she was the first woman to be appointed to the Law Commission, a statutory body which promotes the reform of the law. Important legislation resulting from the work of her team at the Commission includes the Children Act 1989, the Family Law Act 1996, and the Mental Capacity Act 2005. She also began sitting as an assistant recorder.


 

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In 1994 she became a High Court judge, the first to have made her career as an academic and public servant rather than a practising barrister. In 1999 she was the second woman to be promoted to the Court of Appeal, before becoming the first woman Law Lord.

Lady Hale of Richmond took up appointment as President of The Supreme Court in September 2017, succeeding Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury. This following her appointment as Deputy President from June 2013. In October 2009 she became the first woman Justice of The Supreme Court.

Lady Hale hit headlines across the UK in September 2019 when the Supreme Court ruled that Prime Minister Boris Johnson's suspension of Parliament was unlawful.

Lady Hale will now sit as a crossbench peer in the House of Lords.

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