Thursday, 13 March 2008

UK Men's Aid on McKenzie Friend

Men's Aid lists as follows

"The Court of Appeal recently made a landmark decision which will be welcomed by all who act in person - namely that being accompanied by a friend in court is an absolute right, and is not at the discretion of the court. It was also ruled that denial of this right is unfair and strikes at the very root of justice. These rulings vindicate our stance on the matter, and we are grateful to the National Council for Civil Liberties (now Liberty) for taking up the issues involved.The term 'McKenzie friend' relates to the case of McKenzie v McKenzie - a divorce action where the judge had mistakenly debarred the "friend" of a litigant. The matter went to the Court of Appeal and is reported in [1970] 3 WLR 472, upholding the ruling of Lord Tenterden in Collier v Hicks [7 June 1831] that:

"Any person, whether he be a professional man or not, may attend as a friend of either party, may take notes, may quietly make suggestions, may give advice ..."


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