Care Inquiry legal costs (FOI)
Care Inquiry legal costs (FOI)Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by States of Jersey and published on 19 November 2018.
Prepared internally, no external costs.
The States voted £6million for the investigation into Child Abuse. Who is responsible for negotiating the appointment of UK lawyers and it is possible to have a copy of the legal appointment, if not, does that Agreement specify that the funds available for this investigation are £6million and therefore that is the limit that will be paid under the Agreement?
The letter of contract appointing the lawyers to support the Care Inquiry was issued by the then Greffier of the States. The contract is exempt from publication under Article 33 (Commercial interest) of the Freedom of Information (Jersey) Law 2011.
The contract does not set a maximum level of legal costs.
Report and proposition P118/2012 (Committee of Inquiry: Historical Child Abuse) was debated and adopted by the States Assembly in March 2013. P118/2012 set out that “the best estimate of the total costs of a Committee of Inquiry, including legal costs, is likely to be in the region of some £6 million.”
Propositions - P118/2012
Report and Proposition P20/2015 (Committee of Inquiry: Historical Child Abuse - Additional Funding) was debated and adopted by the States Assembly in March 2015. P20/215 made additional monies available to the Care Inquiry process.
Propositions - P20/2015
Article 33 Commercial interests
Information is qualified exempt information if –
(a) it constitutes a trade secret; or
(b) its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of a person (including the scheduled public authority holding the information).
Public Interest Test
Since the exemption engaged is qualified, not absolute, a public interest test has been conducted to assess whether, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in supplying the information is outweighed by the public interest in not doing so. It is judged that the public interest in raising awareness of specific financial information is outweighed by the potential prejudice to the commercial interests of both the States of Jersey and to third parties.