The Times reports as follows-
Judicial retirement age is illogical, says UK’s top judge
The compulsory retirement age for judges of 70 is illogical and should be scrapped, the UK’s most senior judge says today.
Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury, president of the Supreme Court, says that forcing judges to retire at 70 currently means a “huge loss of experience and talent”. There are laws against age discrimination in almost all sectors of employment.
“Furthermore, the situation is demonstrably illogical as judges who must retire at 70 are able to sit as part-time judges until reaching 75, and people can be jurors until 75.”
Lord Neuberger, who himself will retire in September before he turns 70 next January, insists that he had no personal motive in arguing for an increased retirement age. “I have always accepted the force of the point that any increase in retirement age should be limited to new judges, otherwise there could be an adverse effect on judicial promotion and diversity,” he says.
His comments chime with mounting calls to extend the judicial retirement age, partly to make the job more attractive at a time of problems in the recruitment of judges.
The mandatory retirement age of 70 has meant that two front-runners for the post of lord chief justice, which becomes vacant later this year – Sir Brian Leveson and Lady Justice Hallett – were eliminated. The lord chancellor and justice secretary, Liz Truss, insisted that applicants should be able to take the job for at least four years, which neither potential candidate could do before reaching their 70th birthdays.
Several leading legal voices have recently raised the issue, including Lord Woolf, a former lord chief justice, who told The Times in March: “The recruitment problem of judges is going through a difficult period. There are a number of reasons, including the reduction of the retirement age from 75 to 70. I have supported unsuccessful efforts for this decision to be reversed, but if it cannot be reversed for everyone, it should be reversed for those in the ‘top’ jobs, heads of divisions and Supreme Court judges.”
Lord Pannick, the leading barrister and cross-bench peer, also said recently that the mandatory retirement age of 70 was “impossible to justify”.
Lord Neuberger accepts that lifting the retirement age may result in judges having to be told to retire early slightly more often – when they are no longer up to the job. But that, he said, was a “very small price for avoiding the huge loss of experience and talent” caused by the present retirement age.
i say- what are they going to do about it?