A(31) 17.iii.1998

Call for Judgement

Ian Collier made the following Call for Judgement:

OK then, Mr Recorder, I would like to appeal J(31). Potential judges should take note of what might happen if you uphold the original judgement.


The Judges selected were Terry Boon, Gordon Aickin and Owen Massey (who turned out to be illegal and so was replaced by Nick Fortescue). Terry Boon responded quicksmart with:

I have a strong preference for:

It is illegal for a Judge to produce two Judgements.

Any comments, particularly from Owen or Gordon? If anyone has a suggestion for a "stated and chosen" alternative, I'm open to suggestions.

One thing that does come to mind is the problem of a Judge sending two messages which appear to be Judgements to the Recorder. The Judge considers one of them to be the Judgement, and the other to be a message with no legal force but which merely happens to look like a Judgement. The poor Recorder has no way of knowing which is which.

A plug for this loophole would be a new rule, stating that it is unlawful (the crime of Forgery?) to send something which appears to be a Judgement but which isn't. It should probably be extended to other official reports. After all, the Speaker is required to make the ruleset public (IIRC) - but there is nothing stopping him/her publishing a different thing which appears to be a ruleset as well.

Gordon Aickin responded with a provisional Judgement as follows:

It is illegal for a Judge to produce two Judgements.


Rule 401 states "A legal judgement will choose one of the options set out in the Call for Judgement or may choose and state another alternative."

Which means that anything that choses one of the options set out will be a legal judgement in fact almost anything could be a legal judgement. (Might be bad if judgements are binding.)

But 328 states "the Judge has four days in which to deliver a legal judgement." My reasoning is based solely on the word "a" and the assumption that it is illegal for anyone other the chosen Judge to give Judgement. I assume that the word "a" means one and only one. If many were meant to be possible, then it would say "at least one", or something along those lines.

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Created 18.iii.1998 by Colin Batchelor, OxNomic Recorder