New Supreme Court Replaces House of Lords

When the new legal year starts on 1 October 2009, a new Supreme Court for the United Kingdom replaces the House of Lords as the highest appeal court in the land. It will act as the final court on points of law for the whole of the United Kingdom in civil cases and for England, Wales and Northern Ireland in criminal cases. Previously, the Law Lords were able to become involved in the debate and subsequent enactment of Government legislation (although, in practice, they rarely did so). The creation of the new Supreme Court means that the most senior judges are now entirely separate from the Parliamentary process.